The Bialystoker Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation, an LES institution for eight decades, plans to close at the end of October, leaving nearly 100 elderly residents in need of new housing. In a letter to residents and family members dated July 26, administrator Marilyn Da Silva noted it was a decision made “with deep sadness and regret.”
“The decision to cease operations after more than 80 years of providing quality health care service to our residents comes after a great deal of thought and significant efforts to keep the facility operational and financially sound,” Da Silva wrote. “These efforts included seeking a new operator for the facility, but unfortunately we have been unable to locate another operator.”
The plan to close has prompted outrage from a group of employees and residents who are organizing a protest rally tomorrow afternoon.
Opponents of the impending closure plan to gather at the nursing home at 228 E. Broadway at 1 p.m. and call for a reprieve and an investigation into the factors behind the decision, said William Quintana, the center’s recreation director, in a press release. From Quintana’s announcement:
Apprehensive and outraged, the residents of the Home, family members and community members are staging a coordinated protest rally in the investigation of the abrupt closure and the right to keep Bialystoker from closing and continue their acquisition to provide care for the sick and infirm of lower Manhattan.
According to state records, Bialystoker has 95 beds for residential patients and was at 96 percent occupancy as of July 2011. It is certified to provide care under Medicare and Medicaid. During its most recent inspection in December 2010, state regulators cited four violations related to accident prevention, complying with individuals’ care plans, communications (call bells not working), and record-keeping, according to documents on file. Overall, the home has received generally high marks for its care; the only enforcement action on record was a fairly minor infraction in 2002 that drew a $1,000 fine.
Stay tuned for more information; we’ll have more on this story as it develops tomorrow.