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Golden Living Center closes

Forty-year-old building ‘not suited’ for long-term care one reason for closing

Staff writer

Golden Living Center of Marion will close its doors by Nov. 14.

The announcement was made Oct. 15, by Golden Living Center officials who have been at the facility to oversee the transference of residents to another facility.

The long-term care unit was licensed for 72 beds with 60 residents being the optimum number. At the time when the announcement was made, there were only 30 residents at the facility.

In a written statement from Staci Cardenas, director of operations of Golden Living Center, it stated that the decision was made after a great deal of review and consideration.

“We are proud of the many years of service our caregivers and other staff were able to provide to the Marion community, but the reality is our physical structure is not suited for the complex health care needs of future patients.”

In an interview with Cardenas, she stated that the facility had not performed well for a period of time, making the decision to close a matter of being “purely” a business decision.

There had been rumors around town following the news of the facility closing and Cardenas only could verify that all associates (employees) were being paid for unused vacation time and most particularly longtime employees, were receiving severance packages.

“Even those who already have left employment will be appropriately compensated,” Cardenas said.

She continued that the number one priority throughout this process was continuing skilled nursing care to residents.

The second priority is to find another facility for residents.

Cardenas acknowledged the fact that the closing of a nursing home is different than the closing of another type of business because people’s lives are being disrupted.

The press release stated that the challenges of the Marion building, with the fact that there are other skilled nursing facilities nearby, were determining factors in this decision.

Golden Living Center also owns a facility in Chase County but Cardenas stated the close proximity of another facility and the possibility of patients being moved from Marion to Cottonwood Falls were not factors in the decision.

At Friday’s Marion Chamber of Commerce meeting, Marion Economic Development Director Doug Kjellin told members that he was diligently working with GLC officials to find a use for the soon-to-be vacant building.

He also noted that GLC facility in Lucas also had closed for the same reason.

Cardenas said the facility will close when all residents have been placed elsewhere which could be before Nov. 14.

Some equipment will be moved to other Golden Living Center locations, Cardenas said.

“The building won’t be gutted. We will not take fixtures and other amenities that will help sell the building,” she said.

According to county records, the nursing home was built in 1967 and was operated as Spain Guest Home, Inc.

In 1973, the property was deeded to Mid-America Nursing Centers, Inc.

In the 1980s, Marion Manor, Inc. was the owner of the property with Beverly Enterprises-Kansas, Inc. subleasing it from Marion Manor in 1990.

About five years later, the City of Marion issued $690,000 in Industrial Revenue Bonds to Marion Manor. Not long after that, Marion Manor, Inc. sold its interests to Beverly Enterprises.

On March 14, 2006, Beverly Enterprises deeded its shares of the Marion property to GPH Marion, LLC, and became known as Golden Living Center.

Last modified Oct. 22, 2008

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