Many reasons to keep The Villages county-owned

Posted 29 May 2013 at 12:00 am


If you are still on the fence about supporting the sale of The Villages Health & Rehabilitation Center, consider the following:

The Office of the Inspector General of the Health & Human Services Department reported: “For-profit SNF’s (skilled nursing facilities) were far more likely than nonprofit or government SNF’s to bill for expensive levels of care, raising concerns about the validity of the claims”.

McKnight’s Long-Term Care News stated: “Nursing Homes owned by private investors and other types of for-profit operators had more total deficiencies than homes run by public companies, according to a new report.”

Here is a quote from a comment made on-line concerning the above: “I have worked for non-profit and for-profit. The difference is amazing. What a struggle in the for-profit to get new equipment, new technology and a satisfactory environment for staff. In the non-profits, it’s “what the resident needs, the resident gets.” Yes-the budget needs to still be watched due to all of the wonderful “cuts”, etc. that our government makes, but it is still 99.9 percent better than the other. These poor seniors don’t realize what the difference will be when they look for a place to spend their golden years!”

In the Legislature’s Frequently Asked Questions they state: “The notion that a privately-run facility does not deliver comparable care to a publicly-run facility is untrue, and the data does not back it up.” The above data does seem to back up that very thing. Yes, public and private nursing homes are held to the same federal standards but that doesn’t mean they do it, as is documented above.

The county said they will stipulate that the sale can only proceed upon a guarantee that the buyer will not discharge existing residents. What does that say about potential future residents? A private owner will cherry pick and many of our community residents who cannot “pay their own way” may find themselves in an out-of-county facility. That does not save Orleans County money. The county of residence pays the Medicaid bill. And the resident loses because family and friends will not be able to visit as often.

This should not be a 7-person (Legislature) or 3 person (LDC) decision. If it is going to be considered at all, it should be made by the taxpayers of Orleans County.

Thank you for your consideration.

Grace Denniston
Member of Concerned Citizens of Orleans County
Albion, NY