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York County nursing home offers beds to patients in need

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Springettsbury Township, York County, Pa. -- York County's Pleasant Acres nursing home is opening up more beds to patients in need.

Those patients aren't the only ones looking for a hospital bed.

The staff at WellSpan York Hospital said they're used to fixing things, but they realize they also need a little help in taking patients back to just being people.

Some patients almost end up living at the hospital. Ted Stafford was a patient at York Hospital after getting treated for injuries suffered during a fall. His hospital stay was up, yet he had no place to go home to recover and no insurance.

"I thought I was just going to go back out on the street, but they stepped in, and they got me through the nursing home," Stafford said.

Senior director of case management at WellSpan Health Ann Kunkel recognized that there were other patients like Stafford.

"Many of them needed connections to community services that take a while to get in place, and so their journey to their health was being halted for a little bit of time," Kunkel said.

Kunkel made a connection with Pleasant Acres. Last year, the nursing home started offering up six beds, and now has added ten more, which also frees up beds at York Hospital.

"When a person is in need of emergency care and they come into our emergency department, we want them to be able to get that care, and get into a hospital bed as soon as possible," Kunkel said.

Pleasant Acres Nursing and Rehabilitation Center nurse liaison Susan Oberdick said "it's just been really an amazing and eye-opening experience to bring people into the nursing home, help break down their barriers, and then be able to get them back into the community."

For some patients, the Omega bed program offers more than just a bed.

"They hooked up my social security, medicare, and they were with me quite a bit, to work all through," Stafford said.

Staff at WellSpan and Pleasant Acres work together with other organizations on covering cost, while Oberdick is focused on getting patients back on their feet.

"Whether its into a lesser level of care, or sometimes even into another nursing home, and it's just been really amazing watching the people achieve their goal," Oberdick said.

Nurses at Pleasant Acres said they have opened up beds to patients of all ages, not just the elderly, but many younger people as well.