Iowa County Board explains vote to close Bloomfield Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center – WMTV – NBC15

DODGEVILLE, Wis. (WMTV) – Operational costs, COVID-19 changes, staff shortages and traditional nursing home popularity swayed the Iowa County Board to vote in favor of shutting down Bloomfield Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center.

“It’s difficult to look in their eyes and see the pain that they’re experiencing,” Iow County Board Chairman John Meyers said in regards to residents, their families and current employees. “We’re having a hard time competing with the assisted living beds and there are a lot of them available in the county. They’re typically less expensive, they have more freedom and they’re a more homey atmosphere.”

Meyers said county-run nursing homes cannot afford to pay staffers as much as privately-run facilities.

“We had to go out to agency staffing organizations to try to fill these positions because you can’t run a nursing home and have vacant positions at night, in the afternoon or during the daytime,” he said. “You have to have it fully staffed.”

He shared that long-term, shutting down is the best move.

“Right now it’s very painful for a lot of people that had loved ones that stayed there over the years,” Meyers said the community shared a number of fond memories at the facility.” There’s a lot of history there.”

He said the facility’s staff will receive full severance and three months of health insurance coverage after they close the doors for good.

The permanent closure is tentatively set for April 1.

The Iowa County Board plans to make sure everyone has a new home before they close.

Meyers mentioned that there are two other Iowa County long term care facilities that could potentially house residents – one in Dodgeville and one in Mineral Point.

The board will answer questions at a public meeting on January 27 at 7 p.m. at the Iowa County Law Enforcement Center at 109 E Leffler St, Dodgeville, WI 53533.

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