|Lead Exposure||Medium Chance|
The Everglades Memorial Hospital - located in Southeast Florida - was erected in 1938 and reports indicate that it was abandoned sixty years thereafter in 1998. My latest - and first - excursion out to the former hospital occurred in June 2017, about nineteen years post-occupation. If you are in the mood for an old eirre, and somewhat dangerous building, this is a great find. I must say though, it is quite a ways out-of-the-way from civilization. The nearest place of metropolitan capacity is West Palm Beach located approximately an hour away down Hwy 98.
The location is very rural and reminds me of driving through the middle of Louisiana when I drove North on US 71 during the springtime after the Mississippi floods and fields of wheat look like fields of rice - flooded in all their glory. The townsfolk out here are very friendly, and I personally spent previous years in a small town surrounded by farms where my friend who accompanied me was more from the suburbs and - I think - was a bit paranoid that everyone was onto us. But the townsfolk were very friendly nearly every one of them giving me a smile and wave. If you are looking for something quite a ways from the city, then this is a great explore. It took us a good hour-and-a-half to explore the entire hospital; I usually move rather quickly too not wanting to remain somewhere too long.
The medical center is located on the main road in and out of town. This means parking is a challenge. I also noted how many of the older townsfolk would sit on their front porch in a rocking chair very stereotypically. It was difficult at first for me to park. My preferred method is to always park in a neighborhood and walk a couple blocks in a nonchalant manner with a suave demeanor; almost like someone who isn't worried about getting caught. On the right side of the facility is a nursing home with parking, but out of all the places surrounding the place, this is the worst to park as it is the most active parking area. Behind the center is a farm, and the rest is neighborhoods. As usual, I can't reveal the best place to park, because it could cause disruption in getting in and might lead to the city to getting security to patrol the premises. My advice though is to enter from the back. Almost every entrance into and out of the building is open - indicating that the city doesn't maintain it (mostly do to it's size and lack of funds for such a feat).
Inside of the hospital is very old and grimey. Very similar to the vibe in Supernatural in the asylum episode during the earlier seasons. The halls were dark and musky. As of this writing, the pictures Google showed were that of the hospital from the Walking Dead where as mine were more showing the age of the building. The lower floor of the structure was mostly closed in, with the exception of entrances, so I would definately bring a flashlight. Also note that since the building was made in 1938 during the height of the asbestos craze, there is a great chance the buildings insulation contains good amounts of asbestos. I would rate it severe, but since it's occupation survived another thrity years after asbestos was phased out, there is a chance some was removed when the building needed repairs, but most old buildings don't remove asbestos as it is usually hidden away. Also, be prepared for the possibility of lead exposure. There shouldn't be an insane risk as most of the walls are tile-based, but for any old paint in the building, the present danger could exist. For radioactivity, I would say there is a low, but possible chance, of radiation. The only reason for me to suggest that is the room between - I believe - the ER and the back hall is the radiology room, and although the equipment was stripped, there is always that possibility.
Grafitti is extremely common around the building - both interior and exterior. Most of the artwork by vandals is located on the top floor due simply to better lighting from the broken windows to open roof-access doors, etc. Be careful on the top floor as the elevator doors are still open and both elevators are on the bottom - one of which has doors open and allows you to step inside (though don't expect it to work). The elevators look like they're straight out of Fallout, so my guess is they are at least sixty years old, but still sturdy. To cap it off, I would recommend bringing pants, long sleeve shirt, sneakers with thick treads underneath, mask, flashlight, and of course your phone for pictures.