GOSHEN — Nurses picketed, state Department of Health inspectors swarmed, and complaints streamed to local elected leaders and the Times Herald-Record in the months after for-profit owners bought the former Elant nursing home in Goshen.
Now, nearly a year after the home became Sapphire Nursing and Rehab at Goshen, a Westchester law firm has filed a scathing lawsuit against the business, and the attorneys are seeking class-action status.
The plaintiffs, a current resident of the home and the estate of a deceased resident, accuse the owners of slashing staff so deeply that residents often sat in their own waste, begging visitors for bathroom help, meals and care.
The suit seeks monetary damages, but also asks the court to require the home to provide proper care.
Sapphire’s troubles under its new leadership reflect a larger trend, according to nursing home experts.
Facing challenges like inadequate government reimbursements and a lack of self-funded patients, New York’s nonprofit nursing home companies are increasingly selling to commercial operators that cut staff to boost revenue.