Staffing problems continue to plague Butler County nursing home

Credit: Submitted

Credit: Submitted

Staffing problems continue to plague the Butler County Care Facility after a failed job fair and a maternity leave forced the hiring of an interim administrator.

The county commissioners approved hiring an interim administrator Monday to help Administrator Chamika Poole while she fills in for her director of nursing who is on maternity leave. The county is contracting with Professional Review Network, Inc. (PRN) for an amount not to exceed $25,500.

Poole is a registered nurse and thus has the qualifications to fill the top nursing spot but cannot handle both jobs. There is a 35-hour a week requirement for the director of nursing position. The temporary administrator will work 16 to 20 hours a week doing Poole’s job for 10 weeks.

Judi Boyko told the Journal-News said it makes more sense to have a temporary person help with Poole’s job than the nursing director position.

“You can’t just put somebody from an agency that has no idea how our operations are run. It’s not just a clinical talent and skill set it’s also continuity of operations and the ability to understand how the facility is currently operating,” she said. “It would take us 10 weeks just to get somebody on to understand that.”

She said Poole’s role as administrator is more about knowing and applying laws and regulations, Medicaid, Medicare and those aspects of a nursing facility.

“The role of licensed administrator is more of a practical application of the regulations than it is of really knowing how the operations are run,” Boyko said, adding this brief stint in the nursing role will give Poole an opportunity to evaluate the operations and identify best practices.

The home was without a director of nursing for almost a year previously and Boyko said they had an in-house nurse serving as the interim director.

The county-run nursing home also lost the business office manager in May when she ran into child care issues due to the pandemic. She had only been on the job three months. Human Resources Director Laurie Murphy said a new business office manager starts next week.

Last week the county held a drive-thru job fair at the facility, trying to hire 28 people including an assistant business office manager, nurses, nurses aides, and kitchen and laundry staff. Murphy said only three people showed up at the event that was held in the parking lot at the facility. This was the county’s first-ever drive-thru hiring event.

They will try another job fair in a couple weeks but this time it will be held at the OhioMeansJobs office in Fairfield. Murphy said the Care Facility is kind of hard to find, tucked away behind the county Board of Elections in Hamilton and the OMJ office is more conducive to a job fair.

“At OhioMeansJobs they have that nice big parking lot, they’ve got copiers if we need them, they’ve got computers if they want to get people in,” Murphy said. “And they’ve got contracts with vendors who are training individuals to get their STNA (nurses aide) licenses, so they have outreach to people.”

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