Spaulding resident’s granddaughter credits Walsh effort to save home


Donna Goodison, Boston Herald

Alissa Tizzano was breathing a sigh of relief yesterday after hearing that her 93-year-old grandmother, who’s suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s, can continue receiving care at a North End skilled nursing center instead of being relocated to a new Brighton facility.

Spaulding Rehabilitation Network announced yesterday that it was selling its Spaulding Nursing & Therapy Center on Fulton Street to Brick, N.J.-based Tryko Partners LLC. Tryko subsidiary Marquis Health Services will operate and renovate the 34-year-old center, and long-term residents of the facility have the option to remain.

“Today is a good day for sure,” said Tizzano, a North End resident whose grandmother has been at the nursing facility for eight years. “Our most vulnerable residents — our seniors — get to stay home, and they don’t have to be uprooted. They’re the ones who built this neighborhood.”

Spaulding has operated the 140-bed North End facility since 2001. Citing decreasing demand and cost challenges, it proposed to close and sell the center, and give its 50 to 60 long-term residents — including about 15 from the North End — the option to move later this year to a 123-bed Brighton facility that it bought last year. It still will close its 1950s-era, 78-bed skilled nursing facility in West Roxbury and give those residents the option to relocate to Brighton, a spokesman said.

Tizzano credited Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s efforts to keep a nursing home in the North End, and Spaulding’s recognition that “this just isn’t a business deal — it’s a neighborhood.”

“We are extremely pleased that we have found an organization that is willing to maintain a facility in the North End community and provide continuity of care for the existing long-term patients,” Walsh said in a statement.

Marquis operates U.S. facilities with 2,000 skilled nursing beds, including nine in the Bay State.

“Marquis has an impressive track record of making investments in their facilities and scores well on publicly reported quality measures,” Spaulding president David Storto said.

Marquis CEO Norman Rokeach said he expects the company’s focus on hands-on quality care will be well-received by the North End center’s residents and their families. “We look forward to working collaboratively with the community and the city of Boston,” he said.

Spaulding declined to reveal the purchase price for the North End center until the sale closes in about 30 days.