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By Echo Menges, NEMOnews Media Group
The announcement of the coming closure of the Scotland County Care Center nursing home and residential care facility in Northeast Missouri has left citizens worrying about the health of other local nursing homes. The NEMOnews Media Group family of newspapers is in the process of reaching out to other nursing homes in the area for information about how sustainable our facilities are.
In Shelby County, the Salt River Community Care Nursing Home Administrator Chris Ratliff was kind enough to take time from her very busy workload to help us update the public. Below you will find a short question and answer interview with Ratliff conducted late last week about how the nursing home is faring amid the staffing shortage.
Q&A Email Interview with Salt River Community Care Administrator Chris Ratliff, RN
Q: How many residents is your facility licensed to hold?
Q: How many residents does your facility currently have?
Q: Are you accepting residents from the Scotland County Care Center?
Q: If not, why?
A: We do not have enough rooms to take out of county residents at this time, due to many residents having private rooms, and we cannot put the strain on the staff, until we are able to hire more.
Q: Are you experiencing a staffing shortage?
Q: If so, can you please explain the details of it?
A: We began using agency staff to fill in gaps where we are unable to fill with our own staff and this is the first time that we have needed to resort to this method. We are lacking applicants to fill the current positions, especially in the nursing department.
Q: Financially, how long can your facility afford to continue business as usual?
A: Hopefully several years.
Q: Are you in danger of closing?
A: Not at this time.
Q: Additional comments
A: I think most of our challenges come from the increasing regulatory requirements and expectations, coupled with the decrease in available staff.
The Salt River Community Care Administrator will take the names and contact information of ANY licensed nurses in the area willing to help out if needed by the nursing home. Those willing to be added to the list of backup licensed nursing staff can call her and leave a message at 573-588-4175.
The Clarence Care Center and the Shelbina Villa were sent the same questions Thursday, December 23, 2021. Those nursing homes have not responded to our requests. We will publish their answers if and when they are made available to us.