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Future uncertain for local healthcare facility

Posted at: 03/28/2013 11:11 PM
By: Lynette Adams

It's a decision that could save taxpayers money but some say it can potentially jeopardize healthcare. Another healthcare facility in our area is facing an uncertain future.
     
The Ontario County Board of Supervisors debated what to do with it's nursing home. There were strong arguments on both sides. Some supervisors say it's a betrayal to the workers and the patients to sell the facility. Yet others say, the county doesn't have a choice, it can't afford to run a nursing home.

The 40-year-old facility will cost Ontario County taxpayers about $4 million and that doesn't include a quarter-million dollar sprinkler system officials say has to be installed this year.

Another option is updating the 98 bed facility, but taxpayers would be on the hook for about $30 million.  

The board is looking at other options but right now, the nursing home is for sale.

John Sheppard, Seneca supervisor, said, “$3 million dollars this budget year, $5 million in 2015. If you look at the divergent lines between expenses and revenue it gets worse. It's not sustainable.”

Dave Baker, Canandaigua supervisor, said, “I'm not sure that we have a good track record in outsourcing. When it comes to people, it can't be the financial dollar that decides.”

Dorothy Huber, East Bloomfield supervisor, said, “The best thing we can do for the residents of that nursing home is to free up the facility so that potentially those infrastructure changes can be made, to make it a more appealing place for the people who live in it.”

The board of supervisors postponed the vote until its next meeting in three weeks. That's one day before prospective buyers have to turn in their bids to the county.

The board of supervisors has put some contingencies in the sale. Ontario County residents would get preference for beds. The new owner could not dislocate any of the current residents and it would be required to provide an opportunity for workers to reapply for their jobs.