National Long-Term Care News Bites: Mass. Bill Establishes Rights for CCRC Residents

Here’s a collection of news bites pertaining to the senior housing and long-term care industries, gathered from around the nation. Many of the articles are state-specific, but could eventually have national implications or influence senior care trends. Click the links to access the full article.

From (Mass.)—Governor Signs Bill Regarding Rights of CCRC Residents

Massachusetts Senate Bill 2139 “Establishes the rights of residents of Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) to establish a residents’ association and have the power to elect its officers,” writes WickedLocal. “The measure requires the facility to provide information to residents including explaining any adjustments in monthly and other fees paid by residents as well as informing them of all matters that affect their health and welfare.” Read more


From CBS-DFW (Tex.)—Senior Living Providers Adjusting for Flu Concerns

“The flu outbreak that’s sickened thousands of North Texans is an even greater threat to the very young and the elderly– and that’s forcing operators of area senior living centers to take special precautions. “It’s a grave concern,” says Kathy Barone, Executive Director of the Emeritus at Eden Estates senior community in Bedford,” reports the local CBS affiliate. “At Eden Estates, lunch is no longer served in the lavish dining room. It’s delivered to resident’s rooms in disposable containers because of the flu emergency. Gathering areas like the coffee shop and community rooms–typically full of residents–are quiet and empty since they’ve been asked to stay in their apartments. Barone says they’ve had 51 confirmed flu cases since January 4th– that’s more than a third of the residents.” Read more

From WRTA (Pa.)—Nursing Home Workers Begin Statewide Contract Negotiations


“Yesterday, almost 7,000 nursing home workers and members of SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania who work in 80 facilities across the state initiated their first day of bargaining for new union contracts set to expire this year,” reports WRTA. “Approximately 150 negotiating committee members traveled to Harrisburg to meet with industry representatives from Golden Living Center, Genesis, Extendicare, Reliant and Guardian nursing home chains as well as independent nursing homes. Nursing home leaders will now meet with their co-workers to prepare for continued bargaining throughout the winter.”

From the Toledo Blade (Ohio)—Troubled Nursing Home Set to Close

“Following a history of problems, a Toledo nursing home has lost its Medicare and Medicaid provider agreements, effectively shutting the home down. Liberty Nursing Center of Toledo, 2005 Ashland Ave., has also been facing the loss of its state license since August for several instances in which staff allegedly failed to prevent and respond to alleged abuse,” reports the Toledo Blade. “The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services told Liberty in a letter last month it was being fined at least $36,400, in addition to having its Medicare and Medicaid agreements terminated, effective Jan. 8. Residents must leave Liberty by Feb. 7, said Beverley Laubert, state long-term care ombudsman with the state Department of Aging.” Read more

From The Dedham Transcript (Mass.)—New England Groups Collaborating with In-Home Private Care Services

Hebrew SeniorLife (HSL), the largest provider of senior health care and housing communities in New England and an affiliate of Harvard Medical School, announced today a formal collaboration with HouseWorks to deliver non-medical private care services to Hebrew SeniorLife’s private care clients,” reports The Dedham Transcript.  “Under the new collaboration, Hebrew SeniorLife’s private care service will be relaunched as Hebrew SeniorLife Private Care powered by HouseWorks. HouseWorks is a leading provider of in-home private care serving Boston area residents for more than 14 years. Seniors who receive Hebrew SeniorLife Private Care services to help them live at home independently.” Read more

From the Greenwich Daily Voice (Conn.)—Nursing Home May Take Pets During Emergencies

“Pet owners who were forbidden by Greenwich law from bringing pets to shelters during Hurricane Sandy might have options in case of another emergency thanks to a local nursing home,” reports the Greenwich Daily Voice. “The Nathaniel Witherell, the not-for-profit nursing home owned and operated by the Town of Greenwich, is considering accepting pets and their owners in the event of another town-wide emergency like Hurricane Sandy. State Rep. Fred Camillo, who took in an elderly woman and her dog during Hurricane Sandy because of the town policy, is hoping the town changes its laws before another emergency hits.” Read more

From the Daily Press—ALFs Continue Operating Despite Expired Licenses, Violations

“Expired facility licenses and a slew of violations, including a lack of qualified administrators, haven’t prevented the continued operation of several assisted living facilities, or ALFs, under the ProPlusCare umbrella in Hampton Roads. Despite ongoing complaints and multiple documented failures to meet the state’s standards, thanks to due process, they can continue to operate and take in new residents until all licensing appeals are exhausted,” reports the Daily Press. “The Department of Social Services, which regulates them, was unable to give a timeline for the process, which in the instance of Madison Retirement Center in Williamsburg has continued for almost a year, since March 2012. Many—including social workers, case managers, and community agency representatives—blame the conditions not on the operator of the assisted living facilities, but on the state’s failure to adequately fund community housing for the mentally ill.” Read more