Death toll rises to 15 among nursing home residents evacuated to Tangipahoa warehouse

Local News

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Fifteen of the nearly 850 nursing home residents evacuated to a warehouse in Tangipahoa Parish ahead of Hurricane Ida has died, according to the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH).

LDH said that five were confirmed to be storm-related deaths by a coroner.

“Additional deaths may be considered storm-related pending autopsy/pathology results, but to stress, these deaths have not yet been classified as storm-related,” LDH Public Information Office Mindy Faciane.

Faciane said in an email that the number of deaths will likely rise.

“As time passes and given the health conditions that required a nursing home level of care, unfortunately, the number of deaths among this group is likely to increase,” Faciane said. “That is why it is important to make a distinction between the number of total deaths regardless of cause and the number of storm-related deaths.”

The seven nursing homes that evacuated to the warehouse are owned by Bob Dean. Dean’s representation, John McLindon, said that all five people who died in or around the evacuation were all on hospice.

LDH stripped the nursing homes of their licenses. McLindon said they are filing an appeal to get the licenses reinstated.

Dean faces seven lawsuits and an investigation by the attorney general according to McLindon.

McLindon said they are “cooperating as much as we can.”

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