By MELANIE MANN
So now County Executive Greg Edwards has notified us that Richard Platschek, owner of three facilities in the Buffalo area, is putting in an offer to buy the County Home.
Mr. Edwards stated the homes that are owned by Mr. Platschek are "as good, or better rated than that of the County Home." Let me give you some facts about Sheridan Manor, one of the three facilities that Mr. Platschek owns. I have a friend that was hastily placed at this facility for rehabilitation, and I visited her while she was there; their latest New York state survey leaves much to be desired.
The statewide average for deficiencies lies at approximately 18 per facility. Sheridan Manor had 23.
While an additional five deficiencies may not seem concerning on its face, it is the severity of the deficiencies that gives me - and should give all Chautauqua County residents - pause. For example, life safety code deficiencies (the building safety, fire drills, construction, building maintenance and working order of sprinkler systems, etc.), stands at 15; the statewide average is seven per facility.
This facility was also double the statewide average when it came to deficiencies related to actual harm or immediate jeopardy of patients. My friend feared for her safety and personal security the entire time she was at this facility.
As a former employee of a privately funded nursing home, I can tell you that not only is this survey deplorable, but New York state survey results are a direct result of the number and caliber of the employees in the facility; directly influenced by the administrator and owner.
It should give the residents of this area enough of a scare to call their county representative and inform them to vote no in selling our County Home.
As for the fixation Mr. Edwards seems to have with selling our County Home, shame on you! The fact that you have a large salary and, if you need it, will receive your senior care privately (at the expense of local taxpayers, may I add), should be further reason for you to leave our County Home alone.
Or better yet, let's try some give and take if you continue to be bent on selling the County Home, Mr. Edwards, the taxpayers should be confident that you will be a resident there some day, should you need care.
How about a resolution making a contingent change to Mr. Edwards' benefits package if he sells the County Home?
Melanie Mann is a Fredonia resident.