Catholic Healthcare West To Close Only Skilled Nursing Homes in Taft
Officials for Catholic Healthcare West on Wednesday said that the company will close its two skilled nursing homes in Taft by the end of August, the Bakersfield Californian reports. In a letter to city and Kern County officials, CHW said that it would "permanently cease operation" of the hospital-based nursing facilities. The facilities are Taft's only two skilled nursing homes, and there are no immediate plans to build a new home, according to the Californian. The two facilities can accommodate 63 residents, but the move will affect only 14 patients because the facilities have not been accepting new patients recently. Sixty-eight staff positions also will be eliminated with the closures, which come after CHW closed all but the skilled nursing unit at Mercy Westside Hospital in September 2003. Cherryl Biggar, administrator at Mercy Westside, declined to comment, the Bakersfield Californian reports. Chuck Hagsrom, president of the board for the West Side Health Care District, said, "We're just very disappointed [CHW has] chosen to do this," adding, "There's really not much else we can do. We're in no position to buy the skilled nursing facilities" (Hunn, Bakersfield Californian, 6/30).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.