State to shutter two Greater Hartford nursing homes

BY Matt Pilon

Blair Manor Facebook page
Blair Manor Facebook page
Blair Manor in Enfield, which touted its high rating from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, is set to close early next year.
Nursing homes in Hartford and Enfield that have been under state receivership since June will close as early as January, according to legal filings.

The 105-bed Ellis Manor and the 98-bed Blair Manor booked combined average monthly losses of nearly $182,000 in their past two fiscal years, receiver Phyllis Belmonte wrote in state court filings in September. Belmonte determined that both facilities were facing "intransigent financial barriers to continue to operate and provide substantially compliant care within available revenue sources."

A state judge on Nov. 8 approved a motion to suspend new admissions and shutter both facilities, records show.

The union representing workers at Blair, SEIU District 1199, protested that motion, arguing that the closing would have a "devastating effect on the residents of the facility whom will suffer not only the loss of their homes at this vulnerable stage of their lives but also the loss of their current caregivers, whom will also, of course suffer greatly if their jobs are eliminated as a result of the home's closure."

The union urged the court to keep Blair open for a few more months to find a buyer.

It's unclear exactly how many people work at the two facilities. A WARN notice that Belmonte filed with the Department of Labor on Nov. 9 did not give a headcount.

Ellis and Blair had gross payroll of approximately $738,000 from the beginning of June to the end of September, according to court filings.

Belmonte told DOL that it will take at least a few months to discharge all residents and relocate them to new facilities. She estimated that the facilities would close on Jan. 9 or later.

The nursing homes had been operated by entities within Affinity Health Care Management, which filed for Ch. 11 bankruptcy early last year its second bankruptcy in eight years.

One other Affinity nursing home, Douglas Manor in Windham, could head to the sales block. The receiver asked the court earlier this month to approve a bid program to sell the 90-bed facility.