South Boston resident, Representative Nick Collins is urging Attorney General Healey to investigate the potential closing of Kindred Healthcare/Haborlights on East Seventh Street. A hearing was held in the neighborhood recently to discuss the closure and many residents voiced their opposition. After the hearing, two articles surfaced calling into question whether state funds allotted in 2016 to supplement “direct care” workers and wages have been appropriately spent by the healthcare operators. You can read the articles here and here.
Below is a statement from Representative Nick Collins’ office:
Representative Nick Collins recently signed a letter with House and Senate colleagues requesting that Attorney General Healey investigate Kindred Healthcare and their proposed closing of nursing and rehabilitation facilities across the Commonwealth. On December 1, 2017, Kindred notified the DPH, as well as staff and patients at their 6 facilities across Massachusetts that they intend to close all the facilities by the end of the first quarter in 2018.
After working with the DPH, Rep. Collins arranged an emergency hearing scheduled at the Curley Center in December. Residents turned out to voice their opposition to the closure, and give accounts of the negative impacts it would have on their families. However, attempts to get more information from Kindred on the financial health of these facilities and the reasons for closure have been largely stymied.
Two days after the hearing, articles came out in the Boston Globe and State House News calling into question whether state funds allotted in 2016 to supplement “direct care” workers and wages have been appropriately spent by the healthcare operators. One question the Legislators want answered is this: were these state funds used to compensate Kindred’s CEO and upper management while they planned the closure and sale of their nursing facilities in Massachusetts as a way to increase profitability?
“Our communities have had generations of family members treated at these facilities” said Rep. Collins. “The services they provide are critical for healthy neighborhoods and families, and we will not stand by while those services are taken away just to gain a profit. Kindred must be forthcoming with this information and provide our community with truthful answers so that we can move forward appropriately, hopefully by finding another operator for the facility.”
The letter was signed by the four State Senators and four State Representatives who have Kindred facilities in their districts. The bicameral group of legislators now awaits a response from the Attorney General’s office.