JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Surprise trips by investigators to adult care facilities this week uncovered hundreds of violations in northeast Florida.
The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration made unannounced visits to ensure the health and safety of patients.
One assisted living was closed down by the State Fire Marshal. It was one of 39 facilities that received surprise visits from investigators.
At another location, 14 people were evacuated because they were considered "at risk."
"We will continue to investigate and close out these investigations," said Horace Dozier, AHCA field office manager."Right now these are considered open investigations."
The initial results in the region identified 130 places that did not have a current service plan for residents, 47 that didn't have the correct health assessments, and more than 50 percent of the facilities were not in compliance with employment requirements.
"The benefit of finding these violations when they are not significant is that it provides the responsibility for the facility to fix them now, and that's really important that they fix the less severe deficiencies early so that they do not grow and create larger problems later," said Molly McKinstry, deputy secretary of Health Quality Assurance.
At one adult care facility, which looks like house, investigators said they took "emergency action" because the owner, Caron Brown, put a resident at an empty house next door that is up for sale. Brown confirmed the accusation.
"No air conditioning, lack of food, lack of appropriate supervision," said Anne Avery, an ACHA operations and management consultant. "She, you know, needed immediate services, so we certainly contacted the Department of Children and Families."
AHCA points out some places in the area were significantly better, using the L'Arche Harbor House as an example of an organization that's operating properly.
"There were good homes here, good assistive care facilities here, but there were violations," said Eric Miller, inspector general.
For the other care facilities deemed "in violation" the agency said this is just the beginning of the investigative process.
To view full reports of quality of care violations, go to www.FloridaHealthFinder.gov and use the facility locate feature.
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