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Fla. Surgeon General Calls For More Oversight At Brain Rehab Centers

After allegations of abuse and a lawsuit alleging fraud at a South Florida rehab home for people with brain injuries, state agencies are investigating all similar facilities in the state. The Florida surgeon general is also calling for state laws to be strengthened to give the agencies more oversight over the centers.

Molly McKinstry, of the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, says a series of news reports about the Florida Institute for Neurologic Rehabilitation have prompted the multi-agency investigation into all transitional living facilities. They’re group homes where people with traumatic brain injuries are rehabilitated.  Bloomberg News reported that when a young woman died last year at the Wauchula facility, state agencies dropped their investigation because they didn’t feel they had enough enforcement power.

“So we felt it important to pull together our regulatory partners and take a look at what was going on,” McKinstry said.

On Thursday, Surgeon General John Armstrong sent a letter to the advocacy group Disability Rights Florida to invite its input on how Florida law should change to give regulators more power.