Senior Care Authority co-owner describes ‘critical shortage’ of nursing home beds in Rochester

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) – Thursday, Oct. 7 is the deadline for staff to be vaccinated at state-regulated health care agencies including adult care facilities.

Senior Care Authority, a local company in Rochester that helps families relocate loved ones into these facilities says they’re having trouble because of staffing shortages.

"It’s getting harder and in some areas, it’s darn near impossible, there is a critical shortage of nursing home beds in Rochester, New York right now and the biggest problem,” said Co-Owner Mike Kearney.

Kearney told News10NBC that recently he’s been inside various types of health care agencies, and from what he’s seeing and what he’s hearing, it’s unsettling.

"Assisted living, home care, hospice, or a nursing home, none of them can staff properly,” Kearney said.

He said the cause and effect of vaccine mandates across the board is scary to watch when it comes to being able to help people in need.

"Places are only staffing to 80% of what they would like to be staffed too, and now it’s going to get worse. A certain percentage of people who are working there are going to say, ‘no I’m not doing this,’” Kearney said.

Kearney said he does encourage people to get vaccinated, but the mandates have caused damage that at one point might be irreversible.

"If you have a loved one who needs to go into a nursing home right now, god help you," Kearney said. "If you have oodles of money to be able to pay a nursing home you might be able to find a solution, if you don’t you may be facing very, very difficult choices.”

Weekly testing is slowly becoming a non-option. Gov. Kathy Hochul added another mandate of Nov. 1 for certain mental health and developmental disabilities facilities.