Minnesota Department of Health takes over Pine Haven nursing home after financial issues surface
PINE ISLAND, Minn. (KTTC) – The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is stepping in after a nursing home in Pine Island failed to pay its employees wages, healthcare insurance and other vendor fees.
Pine Haven Care Center is now under a receivership with MDH.
The receivership officially began early Saturday morning, giving the Minnesota Department of Health the authority to oversee the facility to address concerns about health and safety of Pine Haven residents
On May 27th, the MDH received a complaint about employees not being paid at Pine Haven Community Center. Early this month, MDH staff members discovered a number of concerns at the nursing home.
“There were concerns about the financial issues in the facility and concerns that there would not be staff to take care of the residents if the staff did not get paid for the services they were providing,” MDH health regulation division director Maria King said.
Along with employee payroll issues, Pine Haven also failed to pay a pharmacy, a food vendor and its payroll service provider.
Now, MDH is taking over Pine Haven, booting out the former owner Marcus Parence, and plans to use Medicaid funds to address necessary expenses, like paying employees.
“We work with the Department of Human Services to identify the best ways to be able to meet the current needs of the residents,” King said.
One former employee named Holly Kallhoff worked at Pine Haven from late April to Memorial Day Weekend, and did not receive her third or final paycheck on time.
She says the MDH takeover is the right move.
“They need the state to step in and kind of take charge and maybe implement some direction in the place,” she said.
Kallhoff says she received her paycheck a week later on June 3.
MDH says it is working with a payroll company to address anymore financial issues.
“We’re really happy to be able to ensure that we’re going to be able to meet the payroll needs of individuals that are doing the good work on the ground at the facility,” King said.
Both MDH and employees agree that paying employees on time is a good way to ensure residents are getting the care they need.
“We’re really grateful to the staff that are working in this facility that are working with us to try to meet the of the individual residents that are living there. We really appreciate that,” King said.
“Ultimately it’s the patients and residents who live there who are being most affected,” Kalloff said.
Temporary orders for receiverships can last up to 18 months, but MDH says it’s too early to tell when exactly the order will end.
In the past nearly 15 years, there have been four receiverships issues by the Minnesota courts.
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