State board sets public hearing on sale of county nursing home for Sept. 13

State board sets public hearing on sale of county nursing home for Sept. 13

URBANA — A state board plans to spend four hours hearing public testimony in Urbana next month about the pending $11 million sale of the Champaign County Nursing Home.

The hearing before the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board has been scheduled for 2 to 4 p.m. and 5 to 7 p.m. Sept. 13 at the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center, 202 S. Broadway, U.

An application filed with the state board by the pending buyer of the nursing home at 500 S. Art Bartell Road, U — Altitude Acquisitions LLC — refers to the nursing home facility name as University Rehabilitation Center, with the legal name being University Rehabilitation Center of C-U.

A corporation under that name was filed with the Illinois Secretary of State's Office on Friday.

County Board Chairman C. Pius Weibel said he hadn't heard of the name University Rehabilitation Center for the nursing home, but was aware a name change would be needed after the sale.

"A new name was expected," he said.

"The proposed project contemplates the transfer of operational control of the nursing home from Champaign County to University Rehabilitation Center of C-U LLC and transfer of the physical plant to University Rehab Real Estate LLC," according to the application. "Upon approval by the Illinois Health Facilities and Service Review Board, University Rehabilitation Center of C-U LLC will apply to the Illinois Department of Public Health to become the licensee, necessitating a change of ownership."

It's anticipated the sale will be finalized when the state health department issues the new license, the applicants projected.

Up to this point, the buyers of the Champaign County Nursing Home have been identified as Evanston-based Extended Care Clinical LLC and Altitude Health Services Inc. Extended Care Clinical provides consultation services for 18 facilities in and around Chicago and Indiana and Altitude Health Services says its mission is to "acquire, develop and provide various support services" to its facilities.

Terms of the July 23 agreement between the county and Altitude Acquisitions LLC call for the Urbana facility to continue to be a used as a 220-or-more-bed nursing home through 2027. Also through that date, at least half the licensed beds must be reserved and certified for Medicaid-managed eligible patients and priority must be given to county residents for admission.

The sale is being brought before the state Health Facilities and Services Review Board because the board has legal oversight over certain medical facility construction projects and certain health facility sales and closures, among them the sale of a county-owned nursing home.

The hearing in Urbana will precede an Oct. 30 board session in Bolingbrook at which the proposed nursing home sale will be considered.

Champaign County Health Care Consumers Executive Director Claudia Lennhoff said she expects a robust turnout at the hearing in Urbana.

"A lot of people remain concerned about the sale of the Champaign County Nursing Home to this particular buyer," she said.

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