Will Census Recover?
One factor constraining SNF growth is the expansion of home health. More care is delivered in this setting since the pandemic. The reduction in SNF beds nationwide is due to more units being converted to private rooms.
Unsafe staffing in nursing care facilities limit census and occupancy growth in 2022. It also hurts the residents currently in the facilities.
Staffing issues are a prime factor behind nursing bed reduction nationwide, and particularly in rural areas.
The number of nursing home residents who are up to date with COVID-19 vaccines is “far too low.” This work environment is not conducive for employees. Being fully vaccinated decreases the risk of hospitalization.
The Ensign Group
The national for-profit chain Ensign Group will be the single largest SNF operator in the United States. The company is still growing. The recent acquisition of two in Colorado add to the 17 SNFs with in Texas, South Carolina, Arizona and Nevada last quarter. Now, the chain has 269 health care operations, 26 of which also include senior living operations, across 13 states.
The company’s acquisition strategy is “opportunistic,” Ensign’s Chief Investment Officer Chad Keetch said.