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Hurricane Irma

Florida Nursing Home Death Toll Rises to Twelve After Irma Knocked Out A/C

MIAMI — A 12th patient has died after being taken from an overheated Florida nursing home that lost its air conditioning during Hurricane Irma, officials confirmed on Friday.

Dolores Biamonte, 57, died Thursday night, according to a statement from the Broward County Medical Examiner's Office.

Image: The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills is seen in Hollywood
Police tape hangs in front of the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills in Hollywood, Florida, on Sept. 13. Andrew Innerarity / Reuters

Hollywood police are treating all 12 deaths from the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills as part of a criminal investigation, spokeswoman Miranda Grossman said in a statement.

Eight patients died Sept. 13, three days after the storm knocked out the nursing home's air conditioning. Others died in the following days. Some who died had body temperatures as high as 109.9 degrees Fahrenheit.

Investigators want to know why the patients died after the storm even though a fully functioning hospital sits just across the street from the nursing home, Grossman said.

Since the storm, Gov. Rick Scott gave nursing homes and assisted living facilities 60 days to comply with new rules that require them to have generators capable of providing backup power for four days.

The dead range in age from 57 to 99. No one has been charged.