Senior Care Centers said Thursday that it is working to confirm the locations of residents and patients evacuated during Hurricane Harvey from the Lake Arthur Place and Cypress Glen Nursing and Rehabilitation Centers.
“We have continued to work tirelessly to locate and confirm the safety of the evacuated patients and residents. This has always been and will always be our highest priority,” Senior Care Centers said in a statement.
The organization also said members of the care team packed medicine, food, water and other supplies on to boats during the evacuation.
“We attempted to accompany the residents as they were evacuated to ensure their safety and maintain knowledge of their whereabouts, but were separated from them during the evacuation process,” Senior Care Centers said.
Andrew Kerr, president of Senior Care Centers released the following timeline of events:
- On Aug. 29 at approximately 11:30 p.m., floodwater from Hurricane Harvey began entering the Lake Arthur Place and Cypress Glen Nursing and Rehabilitation Centers in Port Arthur, Texas. As soon as the flooding began, Senior Care Center said it was in constant contact with the Port Arthur Fire Department and the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS), and were told to expect an evacuation by the National Guard sometime in the early morning hours. This evacuation ultimately did not take place due to worsening conditions.
- As a result, Kerr said caregivers sheltered the patients and residents in place, taking them to higher ground within the facility for the night. At all times, the care of the residents was under the direction of licensed health care professionals. Medications, food, and water were reportedly provided.
- On Aug. 30, Kerr said "unknown volunteers forcibly removed residents." He said team members were not informed of the volunteers’ authority or proper training to do so, and caregivers, who were trying to protect our residents in the chaos of the situation, were physically restrained during the evacuation.
- Members of the care team packed medicine, food, water and other supplies on the boats. Kerr said the care team attempted to accompany the residents as they were evacuated to ensure their safety and maintain knowledge of their whereabouts, but were separated from them during the evacuation process.
- "The volunteers provided us with no information regarding where the residents were transported, and since the evacuation, our team has worked tirelessly to locate and confirm the safety of the evacuated patients and residents," Kerr said. Senior Care Centers has reportedly been in direct contact with the families of the evacuated patients and residents to help transition them to another nursing care facility.