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Florida Nursing Homes are Ignoring Reopening Order, Task Force Member Says

It’s time for Florida’s long-term care task force to reconvene. That’s according to task force member Mary Daniel, amid reports that long-term care facilities across the state are ignoring the governor’s reopening order.

Crystal Thigpen of Seminole is among those being turned away. Though her mother has been approved as a “Compassionate Care Giver” for her grandmother, Thigpen said she has been repeatedly denied status as an “Essential Caregiver” by the nursing home.

“In an email, they told me I misunderstood the guidelines,” Thigpen said. “I didn’t qualify. Flat out. I basically didn’t qualify, and even if I did qualify, the orders aren’t mandated.”

It’s something we’ve touched on in previous coverage, when we spoke with Mary Daniel just days before Governor Ron DeSantis signed off on the task force recommendations.

Those recommendations were not mandated and at the time, Daniel felt it wouldn’t be a problem.

 “It is a bit of a concern, but there is a remedy in our recommendations,” Daniel said at the time. 

The recommendations include a path to file a complaint with the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA). But a once-confident Daniel said the process is not working for everyone, and she is now calling on the task force to reconvene.

“I want them to reconvene, and I want them to make this mandatory,” Daniel said.

We’ve reached out to AHCA repeatedly to find out more on noncompliance issues and have been told our requests are still processing.

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