Press-Republican

Business

February 28, 2014

Home-health-care agency expanding

PLATTSBURGH — Home-health-care services provider HCR Home Care has expanded operations to Essex, Franklin, Hamilton, St. Lawrence and Warren counties.

That will probably hurt Essex County’s own home-health program, county officials say, since they’ve had trouble recruiting nurses in the past and now they will be competing for patients.

The move extends HCR’s presence across the North Country. The Rochester-based company took over the Clinton County home-care program in 2012.

“HCR is a leader in providing high-quality home health-care services across New York state,” HCR Home Care President Elizabeth Zicari said in a news release.

“HCR is very pleased to bring our more-than-35-year history of quality and specialized services, as well as our award-winning care programs, to more patients and families in the North Country.”

CLINICIANS

The company’s North Country operations will be based at its Clinton County office in Plattsburgh, under Director of Patient Services Nichole Louis.

Patient-care needs will be met by HCR’s local clinicians working in the five new counties, Zicari said.

HCR struck a deal with Clinton County after the county shopped its home-health-care license.

The county privatized the service — which was racking up debts of about $2 million annually — in order to save money.

Under the deal, HCR is paying Clinton County $1.5 million over four years for the license.

EXPANSION APPROVED

HCR’s expansion plan for Essex, Franklin, Hamilton, St. Lawrence and Warren counties was approved by the State Public Health and Health Planning Council in October 2013.

The latest expansion will increase patient choice among home health-care agencies and help meet the local need for community-based, home-health services to avoid unnecessary hospitalizations, Zicari said.

She said HCR is nationally recognized for care quality and for patient and physician satisfaction, and the company has been named a Top 100 agency by HomeCare Elite, a national research group based in Lincoln, Neb.

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