Pa. ousts Skyline Healthcare from nine Pa. nursing homes

Stenton Care & Rehabilitation Center, in East Mount Airy, is among Skyline Healthcare’s nine Pennsylvania nursing homes that have temporary management installed by the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health said Wednesday it had installed temporary management at nine nursing homes operated by Skyline Healthcare LLC after finding that the Wood-Ridge, N.J. company, which took over at least 100 nursing homes in seven states since 2015, “could no longer fiscally operate the facilities.”

The move follows similar actions recently by regulators in Nebraska, Kansas, and South Dakota against Skyline, which is owned by Joseph Schwartz, a Brooklyn resident who started in the 1980s as an insurance broker specializing in long-term care.

“We have installed temporary management at all nine facilities to ensure residents will continue to receive safe care,” Secretary of Health Rachel Levine said in a release. “We are taking this action to ensure residents have continuity of care and their needs are met.”

The department declined to identify who would oversee the homes or when the oversight began. An industry source said the state took over Friday.

The nursing homes in question include seven that Skyline has operated under leases from Golden Living since early last year: Stenton Care & Rehabilitation Center in Philadelphia; Doylestown Care & Rehabilitation Center in Doylestown; Exeter Greens Care & Rehabilitation Center in Reading; Lansdale Care & Rehabilitation Center in Lansdale; Lancaster Care & Rehabilitation Center in Lancaster; Phoenixville Care & Rehabilitation Center in Phoenixville; and Rosemont Care & Rehabilitation Center in Rosemont.

The two additional faculties are Willow Terrace in Philadelphia and Wyndmoor Hills Health Care & Rehabilitation Center in Wyndmoor, which Skyline owned before adding the former Golden Living facilities.

The Skyline facilities with the state-imposed temporary manager have 1,053 beds and average 814 patients per day, according to the latest federal data.

The list of troubled Skyline facilities issued by the state does not include nursing homes in Scranton and Bloomberg that Schwartz acquired in February from Geisinger Health for a total of $21.5 million. State officials did not respond to a question about the status of those two facilities.

In New Jersey, Schwartz owns Hudsonview Health Care Center in North Bergen, Brookhaven Health Care Center in East Orange, and Voorhees Care & Rehabilitation Center in Voorhees.

The New Jersey Department of Health on Wednesday said “there is no indication that there are any difficulties with the provision of care” at those facilities. On April 19, the department received applications for the sale of the facilities to Chaim Scheinbaum, a spokeswoman said. Federal records list Scheinbaum as the owner of two nursing homes in Andover, N.J.

A spokesman for Skyline blamed its problems on “an individual property owner with locations in South Dakota, Kansas, Pennsylvania, and Nebraska.” Those are the states where Skyline leased facilities from Golden Living, which in 2016 and 2017 exited nursing home operations nationwide in favor of owning the real estate.

Golden Living did not immediately respond to a request for comment.