Report: Federal government has no evacuation plans for nursing homes

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Nursing home providers should not look to the federal government for disaster evacuation procedures, a Congressional report concludes.

Federal plans to help evacuate the elderly from a disaster area talk about evacuation procedures for hospitals but not nursing homes, according to the Government Accountability Office. Also, the response plan does not provide for ambulances or helicopters to evacuate patients from facilities.

The Pentagon and Homeland Security Department last week said state and local officials are responsible for planning the evacuations.

Mass confusion surrounded Hurricane Katrina over whether local or federal government was in charge of evacuations. In a glaring example of mislaid plans, More than 30 bodies were found at St. Rita's Nursing Home following the storm after the owners failed to evacuate the residents.
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