Nursing Center Adds 'Rehabilitation' To Name, Mission

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Nursing Center Adds 'Rehabilitation' To Name, Mission

Leonardtown, MD - 1/23/2013

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By Dick Myers

Members of the administration and board of trustees of the St. Mary’s Nursing and Rehabilitation Center reported to the St. Mary’s County Commissioners Tuesday on the status of the facility in Leonardtown. Two and a half years removed from ownership by county government and now under operation as a private-not-for-profit facility, the representatives painted a picture of a facility staying the course while tweaking its operation to make it more in touch with the times.

One of those changes, explained Administrator Annette Hodges, is the addition of “Rehabilitation Center” to their name to reflect the new emphasis on out-patient rehabilitative services. That is one of the trends for the future which include, according member of the Governing Board of Trustees Jill Knott, “baby boomers, home based and community services and increased competition.”

To tap into the demand for rehabilitation services, the center is doing a feasibility study to determine whether to proceed with the addition of private rehabilitations suites (instead of the current semi-private rooms), community-based services and expansion of its rehab gym. The bed capacity at the facility has been reduced from 212 in July of 2001 to 180 in January of 2010, reflecting the conversion to out-patient rehab services.

 According to Hodges, the center operates on a “round the clock care team” staffing model that includes 160 full-time and 58 part-time employees. Half of the employees have been there for five years or more with the longest tenure more than 40 years. The staffing ratio is 3.85 per patient days (PPD) versus the state standard which is only two PPD.

Hodges says that the Maryland Healthcare Commission Family Satisfaction Survey for the facility showed a 100 percent satisfaction rating. Based on “Pay for Performance,” the nursing center ranked 13th out of 205 facilities in the state for 2012.

According to Secretary/Treasurer Ken Capps, the payor mix at the facility is heavily weighted to Medicaid, at 60.1 percent, followed by private pay at 23.3 percent and Medicare Part A at 15.4 percent. Its FY 2012 revenue was $12.9 million, slightly above for the not-for-profit.

According to Hodges, facility improvements include:

·Install new HVAS system

·Install new roof on building structure

·Replace walk-in refrigerator in kitchen

·Install resident kitchenettes on every floor

·Implement quiet rooms as family/visit areas

·New nurse call system

·Ceiling renovations in resident dining room.

She said lighting and a retrofit project have cut monthly energy costs almost in half.

Board member Dan Raley, a former county commissioner, said he was very uncomfortable as a county commissioner making some of the operating decisions required for the facility. He called the conversion to a not-for-profit an “historic hallmark.” As the St. Mary’s Nursing Center, it opened in 1965

After the formal presentation, Commissioner Daniel Morris (R: 2nd) asked if a road leading from the center to the hospital might not be a good idea to facilitate emergency situations. Raley said that the center does provide transportation, at cost to the patient, to the hospital. But Raley suggested that the commissioners put such a road in their capital budget.

Morris and several of the other commissioners were complementary of the center’s operation. Commissioner President Francis “Jack” Russell said he had recently visited a resident of the nursing home and he was very impressed with the care and friendly atmosphere.

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