The Saratogian News reported that a long-time employee and relatives of residents at the former Maplewood Manor nursing home disclose that residents aren’t being fed, bathed and cared for properly since new owners took over on Feb. 1. The employee states that residents were verbally and physically abused by one of the nearly three dozen temporary agency workers brought in from New York City to fill staffing shortages. But another person said medicine wasn’t administered in a timely manner to their family member, and that the facility ran out of bibs and wash cloths last weekend. “I watched an aide use disposable paper ones,” the person said. “My family member cried out like it was sandpaper.” A current long-time employee said patient alarms sometimes aren’t attached, food is simply left with residents that need assistance eating, and residents who previously were changed and put to bed by early evening are still in wheelchairs — wearing urine-soaked diapers — close to midnight. “Since it switched over there’s been a lot of neglect,” the employee said. “I blame it on these agency people and I blame it on Zenith because they weren’t prepared (for the changeover).”
The principal owners of Long Island-based Zenith Health Care Group, Ari Schwartz and Jeffrey Vegh, purchased Maplewood Manor from Saratoga County for $14.5 million. The facility has been renamed Saratoga Center for Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Care. Since the ownership change pay has been reduced from about $21 to $15.10 per hour, that employee healthcare contributions have gone up and that it takes longer to become eligible for sick time and vacations. One employee resigned this week, in part because the workload had become too great.