Health Commissioner Acts to Ensure Patient Care
Albany, December 8 -- New York State Health Commissioner Barbara A. DeBuono, M.D., stepped in today to ensure appropriate patient care at four affiliated nursing homes where employees were not paid on time.
In addition, Dr. DeBuono has asked State Attorney General Dennis C. Vacco to seek court action to appoint a temporary caretaker for these four facilities. The petition is scheduled to be heard by State Supreme Court Judge Anthony J. Carpinello at 6 p.m. in the Rensselaer County Courthouse, 279 River Street, Troy.
The facilities are: Highgate Manor, 100 New Turnpike Road, Troy; Hilltop Manor, 1805 Providence Avenue, Niskayuna; Rosewood Gardens, 284 Troy Road, Rensselaer; and Highgate Manor-Cortland, 28 Kellogg Road, Cortland.
All four long term care facilities are owned by Charles Brennick of Alton, New Hampshire. Their administrators informed the Health Department this morning that Mr. Brennick failed to make the payroll today. At that point, the Health Department immediately began surveillance activities, including on-site monitoring by its staff to ensure that a level of staffing appropriate to patient care is maintained at each of the facilities. Approximately 500 residents are cared for in the nursing homes, including some with traumatic brain injuries.
Dr. DeBuono assured that Health Department staff will be on site for each shift until the situation is resolved. Her staff also is assessing the availability of beds in other long term care facilities, should patient transfers become necessary.
The Health Department has received assurances from Meditrust, a Boston-based real estate investment firm which is the parent company of Meditrust of New York, Inc., the facilities' landlord, that it will meet the nursing homes' financial obligations as soon as a temporary caretaker is named.
An estimated 500 staff are employed at the four facilities. Meditrust has promised to make retroactive payments to all nursing home staff once a caretaker or receiver is appointed.OPA Contact: Claudia Hutton, Director, Public Affairs (518) 474-7354
New York State Department of Health Posted: January 17, 1996