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Tornado damage causes whirlwind for LTC residents

January 15, 2016
by Nicole Stempak, Associate Editor
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More than 120 memory care and nursing home residents were relocated after a tornado shattered windows and part of the roof.

Nine tornadoes left a trail of destruction in North Texas Dec. 26, including damage to Rowlett Health and Rehabilitation Center in Rowlett, Texas. Residents were temporarily moved to Winters Park Assisted Living and Memory Care in neighboring Garland, Texas. Both facilities are owned by Senior Care Facilities.

“Staff from Senior Care Rowlett specifically trained to care for Alzheimer’s patients accompanied the residents under their care to Winters Park to guarantee continuity and familiarity of caregivers in the new care setting,” says Senior Care Facilities CEO Mark McKenzie in a statement issued to local Fox news affiliate KDFW.

However, the two facilities operate under different state regulations and Winters Park doesn’t accept Medicaid. That means some residents might have to be moved again.

The Texas Department of Aging and Disabilities (DADS) will decide if residents with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia can stay at Winters Park until Rowlett can be repaired, which could take months. A DADS spokeswoman says a decision has not been made. She emphasized there are plenty of beds in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and no one would be left without a bed or transferred outside of North Texas.

Related: How prepared is your SNF for emergencies?

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