Bringing back skilled nursing beds in NEPA | Eyewitness News

WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The nationwide nursing shortage adds to the growing problem of how to provide quality care for senior citizens who need nursing home services.

In Pennsylvania, it’s estimated that 2,000 residents are on a waiting list to access the long-term care they need.

Check out the new center city skilled nursing facility in downtown Wilkes-Barre. Allied Services invested more than $10 million in the project after acquiring the facility from the Diocese of Scranton in 2019.

“We’ve made major renovations, we’ve expanded access to care which is really critical in this day and age for seniors and those who need skilled nursing care, and Allied Services is really proud of our employees and the effort they give every day for that care,” said Jim Brogna, the Vice President of Allied Services.

Personal care rooms have been repurposed to add 42 new private skilled nursing beds, which are in high demand. There is expanded and modernized therapy space and equipment — offering a total of 92 private and semi-private rooms.

“When someone is recovering from an illness or an injury, privacy and autonomy remain so very important and in our setting, they’ll be able to have their privacy while working to regain their independence,” stated Julie Brislin, administrator, Allied Services Center City Skilled Nursing.

Since 2020, there’s been a reduction in skilled nursing beds in Nepa due to pandemic-imposed staffing shortages.

Registered Nurse Assessment Coordinator Theresa Richards witnesses the community’s need firsthand.

“Personal care, which is a level that there is no financial assistance for, and a lot of these people exceed that level, they need a little more nursing care than that or a lot, and we can provide it all,” added Richards.

Her goal is to give residents the best quality of care.

“They love to just talk, share their stories, share their life stories. They’re a vital part of our whole society, and it’s wonderful for them to be a part here,” Richards continued.

Since taking over Center City, Allied Services says it has invested in the facility and its staff, introducing wage rate increases to ensure patient safety, staffing ratios, quality of care, and continuity of care.

For more information visit Allied Service’s website.

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