Arkansas Department of Human Services Moving to temporarily take over nursing homes in Arkansas

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- The State Department of Human Services is now making plans to take control of some nursing homes in Poinsett and Yell counties after it says budget crunches could cause a health risk.

Five facilities showed up on DHS’s radar after it was learned that there were serious financial issues.

In some cases, utilities are being threatened to be shut down putting the health of patients in danger.

DHS has been closely monitoring the nursing homes in Trumann, Ola, Jonesboro, Star City and Prescott.

KARK tried to speak to employees in Ola. We were kicked off the property.

We spoke to a worker on the phone who was tight-lipped over the investigation.

On Monday, the Department of Human Services filed complaints to temporarily take over two nursing homes.

One in Ola and another in Trumann.

“We are basically tasked with operating that faculty,” Jerry Sharum said.

DHS is also monitoring 3 other facilities across the state.

Jerry Sharum is the Director for the Division of Provider Services and Quality Insurance.

He says all five facilities are owned by Keith head.

“We were in communication with him last week asking about issues that we had started too see,” Sharum said.

State inspectors have been at all five locations since Wednesday assessing problems with payroll, operating accounts and purchasing supplies.

Deerview in Ola and Arlington Cove Healthcare in Trumann had the most extreme financial issues.

“We are talking about shut off notices from utilities, pay roll issues, delinquencies in making payments to vendors, vendors refusing to provide for their services things like that,” Sharum said.

DHS says the health and safety of residents is their top priority.

“That’s the first thing that we look at whenever we go out to a facility are they caring for those residents, are they safe, are they cared for and are they getting their needs meet both medicine, medical care and personal care,” Sharum said.

The next step for DHS is to get approval from the court and bring in a private management company to help run the facilities.

“Well we will be in each facility the ones we have receivership for and the ones we don’t yet constantly until we are comfortable with the level of care and finances,” Sharum said.

DHS say the owner Keith Head is working with them to get things back on track.

In May 2018, DHS filed complaints to take over two facilities in Dierks and Hazen because of financial issues in Arkansas and across the country.

Those facilities were eventually sold.

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