Government

Valley Hi seeks to raise rates for private paying residents

The county-run facility evaluates increasing rates for residents each year

Valley Hi Nursing Home is seen on Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021, in Woodstock.

Valley Hi Nursing Home in Woodstock is seeking two $5 per day rate increases in 2022 that will impact private-paying residents.

Valley Hi Administrator Tom Annarella submitted a resolution to the McHenry County Board’s Valley Hi committee Monday to ask for the rate hikes, which he said are routine. Under the resolution, which passed the committee unanimously, the Valley Hi residents who pay with private funds to live at the facility would see a $5 rate increase on Feb. 1 and another $5 rate increase on July 1.

The County Board would need to approve the increases as well for them to take effect.

“The goal has always been since I got here to be right in that mid-point, so you don’t have any question as to whether you’re trying to under cut the private market or anything like that and charge a fair rate for the services we’re providing,” Annarella told the committee.

Valley Hi charges residents a daily rate for each day they are in the facility’s care and Annarella said the rate is around the average for long-term care facilities in the area.

According to the resolution, Valley Hi evaluates how much the facility is charging residents each year to determine if any adjustments need to be made to the rate. The most recent evaluation indicated Valley Hi should increase the rate for residents in order to keep pace with the market and rising health care costs during the pandemic.

The rate increase will impact only those who pay to live at Valley Hi with private funds, which is about 20 of the facility’s 60 to 70 residents, Annarella said. Those who pay with Medicaid or insurance will not see any changes.

“Each case is a little bit different. There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to that kind of thing,” Annarella said on why some people don’t use insurance or public funds to pay for their residency.

Unlike many facilities, Valley Hi’s basic rate is “all inclusive” and does not charge residents for additional care they might need, Annarella said.

If the County Board passes the resolution, the minimum rate for Valley Hi residents would ultimately increase to $300 per day. It was last increased on July 1 to $290 per day. Residents pay different amounts based on the when they moved into the facility and they level of care they are receiving.

Valley Hi charges residents who have lived at the facility prior to June 1, 2019, slightly less, which Annarella said was done so rates aren’t increased too much on those who have lived in the facility longer.

Families have already received notice of the rate increase to begin on Feb. 1, Annarella said.

By raising the daily rates, Valley Hi will bring in approximately $13,400 more in 2022, according to county records.