Thursday, May 31, 2012

Nursing home chain bails on Ky.

Company owns 2 area facilities, blames 'litigation environment'
By Nick Tabor, New Era Senior Staff Writer
Following a history of lawsuits, and in light of a litigation reform bill failing in the General Assembly this year, a major nursing home chain plans to unload its facilities in Kentucky to a Texas company.

The corporation, Extendicare Health Services, Inc., owns Pembroke Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Shady Lawn Nursing Home in Cadiz, and 19 other homes in Kentucky. In a 2009 study that ranked 10 Kentucky facilities among the country’s worst nursing homes, three of those belong to Extendicare.

Extendicare also owns facilities in 11 other states as far apart as Oregon and Pennsylvania.

Extendicare announced last week it will lease all of its Kentucky facilities to a long-term care operator in Texas for a 10-year period. The operator can extend its lease or buy the facilities if it wishes.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

First line of defense

School nurses help hundreds of families
By Nick Tabor, New Era Staff Writer
In the late morning on Thursday, as the cafeteria down the hall got noisy with chatter and the shuffling of trays, Rita Poe entered the nurse’s office at Hopkinsville Middle School and took her usual seat at a table.
She carried a small case of tools for treating her seventh-grade daughter’s diabetes.
The nurse, Deana Garrett, greeted her but continued with her business: checking names off a list of kids who needed to pick up medications, putting a Band-Aid on the toe of a girl whose leg cast chafed her skin, rubbing calamine lotion onto a boy’s bug bite.
Read the full entry here.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

County hurting for doctors

Shortage causes problems even for the insured
By Nick Tabor, New Era Staff Writer
Most people who have health insurance can find treatment, even if it means traveling out of the county. The uninsured can often get treatment through St. Luke Free Clinic.
But the shortage strains every part of the local health care system. It increases doctors’ workloads, leaves St. Luke short on volunteers, and limits options for all patients, often causing them inconvenience and budget problems.
As a result, some who are complacent or can’t afford the gas or time for long trips don’t seek preventive care at all. In the end, this puts an undue burden on Jennie Stuart’s emergency room, Bowers said.