Hurricane weekend: NY nursing home evacuates to Mt. Airy

    While Northwest Philadelphia residents were bracing for the storm, senior citizens living in Brooklyn, New York found themselves stuck in Philadelphia for the weekend.

    Over 80 elderly residents were evacuated from an assisted living facility early Saturday morning after being forced to evacuate New York city.

    Raju Kunnath, vice president of Global Healthcare Services runs both a Philadelphia and New York facility, luckily there were eighty-six open rooms available at his Mt. Airy facility, Caring Heart Rehabilitation and Nursing Center. It took a coach bus, and several private ambulance services to transport his clients along with their medications, paperwork, wheelchairs and their nurses.

     Kunnath said that while the relocation was expensive, he had no choice and that patient safety is his number one priority. “We don’t look at the cost, we just want to make sure the residents are safe and secure.”

    Staff worked through the night to prepare the senior citizens and the group left New York early Saturday morning.Maureen Hanzel was last off the bus, the New York native waited patiently in a wheelchair while staff brought her belongings inside. When asked about the journey Hanzel said she understood there was no choice but she’d rather not have to go through it again. “It was very trying, but it was alright,” she said.

    The residents are expected to return to New York on Monday.

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