CHEYENNE – In an Email to local legislators, Director of Wyoming Department of Health Tom Forslund discussed the current situation at Deseret Nursing home in both Rock Springs and Saratoga.
His Email reads:
I wanted to give you an update on the situation regarding the Deseret Nursing Homes in Rock Springs and in Saratoga.
Today we were given official notice of the closure of the Rock Springs facility. As of yet we have not received official notice for Saratoga. We were told that their plans weren’t firm in regards to the Saratoga facility.
Federal and state law specify that the company must prepare a closing plan and submit it to the state before action can be taken. State law requires a thirty day notice to affected parties and federal rules for facilities receiving Medicaid funds require a sixty day notice. The federal rule for a sixty day notice will be followed. We have informed the attorney for the company that both civil and criminal penalties will be sought if there isn’t compliance. The CEO of Deseret has assured us that his company will meet the state and federal requirements.
Today we have seen news stories about Deseret closing their nursing homes in Kansas and in Nebraska. The stories talk about their staff’s paychecks bouncing. We were told that the company is closing facilities in additional states also.
We were contacted today by a representative of an unknown group that might be interested in purchasing the Rock Springs facility. They wanted to know what the requirements were for licensing a Wyoming nursing home. We have provided the requested information.
Apparently is there some type of discussion occurring in Saratoga concerning a local effort to assist their facility. I am not sure how much validity to give to this information since no one has contact our offices about the effort. This is second hand information.
The WY Dept. of Health, Depart. of Family Services, and the AG’s Office have formed a task force to monitor the situation, inspect the facilities, and to develop a contingency plan in the event the company does not follow through with their legal responsibilities to the residents.
The Rock Springs facility has sixty residents and the Saratoga facility has twenty-seven residents.
This is an evolving situation. I am sure there will be many iterations of the story before it is finished. I will try to keep you informed as we go along.
Advertisement - Story continues below...