CHEYENNE – Wyoming Department of Health Director Tom Forslund today announced the department will take temporary management of nursing homes in Rock Springs and Saratoga owned by Deseret Health Group, a private company.
Governor Matt Mead said, “Our paramount concern is the safety and health of the residents in these facilities. I have directed Tom Forslund and the Department of Health to take action to ensure these residents remain safe until appropriate arrangements can be made.”
Forslund said his Department is assuming control of the facilities as a short-term measure to protect residents.
The privately owned Deseret Health Group formally informed the Department on Monday of its intent to close its Rock Springs facility and on Wednesday of plans to also close its Saratoga facility.
“This situation has been difficult, stressful and confusing for everyone involved,” Forslund said. “My staff is closely monitoring the situation and is working with the Governor’s Office and others to determine the best plan of action.”
Today, Forslund issued a formal order to assume temporary management of each facility. The Department is sending experienced healthcare administrators to each location and will ensure continued operations until arrangements can be made to relocate residents. “The local staff deserve thanks and appreciation,” he said.
“The rules call for a 60-day notice for voluntary closure of nursing homes, but the company’s financial instability has made it clear this is not a normal situation and the company cannot meet its obligations to these residents,” Forslund said.
Governor Mead said, “The state’s priority is resident well-being. There will be many things to address in the coming days. We will work closely with the families, community members and employees.”