Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Safe Haven facility nearly complete

First residents could be in nursing center by early January


Safe Haven CEO Scott Burpee, center, gives a tour of the new Bell Mountain Village nursing facility Monday in Bellevue. To the right is Blaine County Commissioner Larry Schoen. Photo by Willy Cook

    Safe Haven Health Care’s new Bell Mountain Village nursing facility in Bellevue is on schedule to have 23 current residents of Blaine Manor in Hailey occupying its rooms by early January.
    The skilled-nursing facility and administration offices will be complete enough to be toured and shared during open houses later this month, administrators said this week. However, because of concerns that the holiday season might delay certain necessary licensing and procedural requirements—and maintaining procedures to protect residents’ privacy—the transition will begin shortly after the ribbon-cutting ceremonies early next year.
    Blaine County commissioners joined Safe Haven CEO Scott Burpee on Monday in a walk-through of the facility on a 29-acre site on the corner of Sixth and Spruce streets. Three buildings totaling 34,000 square feet will contain 48 beds, 32 dedicated to skilled nursing and 16 to assisted living, all of which will be Medicaid and Medicare certified. The assisted-living beds will all be in one building that will also contain offices and a therapy center.
    Burpee said a number of applicants are families moving their senior relatives back to the Wood River Valley after sending them to Shoshone or Twin Falls for immediate nursing home care.
     Landscaping performed by Robles Garden and Landscaping of Bellevue and earth-toned roofing accents and neutral colors will help the facility blend into the toe of the hill at Bell Mountain, north of Bellevue Elementary School, Burpee noted.
    The skilled-nursing buildings are well lit naturally, and contain a nursing station, lounge/common area, kitchen, hair-salon style sink and physical therapy room. Suites have showers with heated floors, personal medical cabinets/nurses stations and sliding doors to divide rooms. The entire facility is made from the most sophisticated non-combustible and fire-proof materials available. Patios are secured by a fence at the back portion of the residences and include gazebos. There will be a small park adjacent to the facility.
    Burpee said there are accommodations for all of the modern demands today’s seniors bring with them, such as access to Internet, Wi-Fi, big-screen televisions and cell phone coverage.
    “The No.1 value cited by today’s seniors is privacy,” Burpee said.
    Most incoming seniors have remained active longer and don’t want limitations simply because they may need or desire care for themselves or partners, he noted.
    Medicaid patients interested in assisted living will first be placed in the smaller Safe Haven home a few blocks away.
    Burpee attended the regular commissioners’ meeting Tuesday morning to address any public comment on the project.
    Commissioner Angenie McLeary said, “I was impressed with the work,” but was still concerned that the contract terms between the county and Safe Haven are strictly adhered to. The commissioners in 2013 awarded a contract to Safe Haven to assume control of the operations of the county-subsidized Blaine Manor facility and eventually move all operations to Bell Mountain Village.
    Commissioners Jacob Greenberg and Larry Schoen said the contract was largely set in place to have a punitive response should Safe Haven fail to pay its scheduled fees to the city of Bellevue and adhere to the terms in a timely manner. Neither felt that the contract was being compromised thus far.
    “We are really close to accomplishing what we wanted to accomplish,” Greenberg said.
    Schoen was most interested in the timely transfer of clients with the least amount of disruption.
    Burpee said the residents would move with their belongings into fully furnished rooms at the skilled-nursing level before any assisted-living care would begin.

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