By Chris Agee | email@example.com
Crazy Water Retirement Hotel owner Charles Miller reportedly dropped a bombshell on the building's residents Aug. 5 when he delivered a letter stating their choice in home health care providers would be limited to two – Health Care Partners at Home and Beyond Faith.
According to the letter, the Crazy Water effective last Tuesday would "no longer be allowing IntegraCare Home Health or Hospice in our building."
After being contacted by Charlotte Patterson, chief corporate compliance officer for IntegraCare, Miller reportedly recognized he had not given the provider sufficient time to discharge its patients and delayed the effective date until Friday.
Patterson said her company is one of the providers serving the Crazy Water, with between five and seven patients living at the property. After the letter was issued, she added, one of the company's hospice patients made the choice to move.
Without the possibility of hospice care included in the provided health care choices, Patterson said Miller addressed her concern by saying residents in hospice care could leave the Crazy Water or make other arrangements, saying the sentiment Miller uses often in conversation is, "it's not my problem."
She said Miller informed her the reason IntegraCare was being denied access to their patients was because the company was "not sending them referrals."
Mineral Wells Police Chief Mike McAllester said he was contacted by an IntegraCare representative questioning whether Miller's action was legal.
After discussing details, McAllester said the department's position was that a property owner cannot restrict who renters allow in their residences.
He contacted District Attorney Mike Burns, who reportedly agreed and began an investigation into the matter.
Patterson said Burns' action, along with those of the MWPD and City Manager Lance Howerton, played a major role in preventing the situation from becoming far more serious.
Burns reportedly became involved immediately and spent much of the past week working for the best interests of Crazy Water residents. He said he was prepared to issue a subpoena for hotel officials to appear before a grand jury Sept. 15, though in light of their decision to rescind the activity in question his office withdrew the subpoena.
"It satisfied me so everything has been withdrawn," Burns said.
The case is closed for the time being, though whether it will be reopened in the future is now up to Miller, the district attorney added.
"There's no indication of that but I guess that depends on their conduct," Burns said.
"The DA stepped up and has gone above and beyond the call of duty to shake every tree to make sure these residents' rights were secured," Paterson said.
Patterson said she received word late Friday morning that Miller's attorney had rescinded the order dictating the choices available for residents.
Patterson said her displeasure with Miller's actions had nothing to do with IntegraCare, instead her concern was for the well-being of the residents.
Had the reason for Miller's decision been based on subpar treatment on IntegraCare's part, Patterson said she would have understood, though said she feels Miller is "hid[ing] behind these poor people for his financial gain."
"Anyone with Medicare has a right to choose their provider," she said.
When patients and doctors began complaining about Miller's directive, Patterson said.
While the possible immediate upheaval to Crazy Water residents has been mitigated by the decision to stop this action, Patterson said she is concerned about future actions.
According to Cecilia Federov, public information officer for the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, the Crazy Water is currently still licensed as an assisted-living facility and faces a deadline of Aug. 18 to notify the department whether they wish to renew or relinquish the license.
Without an assisted-living license and the oversight by the Department of Aging and Disability Services associated with it, Patterson said, Miller can virtually treat his relationship with residents as a landlord-tenant situation.
This could afford him the option of including health care provider restrictions in future leases and the ability to evict those not willing to abide by those restrictions, Patterson said, something she hopes he will not attempt.
The rescission letter issued by Miller Friday left open that possibility, stating residents would be allowed to retain the provider of their choice "under your current lease with our community."
According to Federov, though, even if the facility did relinquish their assisted-living program, DADS has several clients at the Crazy Water who receive services through a program called Community-Based Alternatives.
That distinction means DADS will still have authority over the facility's operations, she said, adding "all consumers have the right to choose their provider."
Federov said DADS will investigate to determine whether the agency should intervene.
"It is a violation of resident's rights for a consumer to be told they have to use a specific provider," she said, even if the restriction is included as part of a lease agreement.
"If we find any consumer's rights are being violated, we will take action," she said.
Miller did not return multiple phone calls Friday requesting a comment and Crazy Water Hotel manager Juan Guardado could not be reached.
Miller threatened to prohibit access to home health agency until DA threatened grand jury investigation
By Chris Agee | firstname.lastname@example.org
- News Toppers
Man charged with drug possession, escape; police arrest man on burglary, burglary warrant charges
Police make arrests in separate cases involving a suspicious individual downtown allegedly found in possession of a meth pipe and a quantity of meth, and a man charged with burglary who was wanted in another burglary case.Continued ...
Taylor Albin: Boss clown: Mineral Wells native living his dream performing with Ringling Bros.
It is always good to be the boss – including when you are a circus clown.Continued ...
Zombies take over downtown: Filming began Wednesday for apocalyptic movie ‘Daylight’s End’
Thursday and Friday parts of downtown Mineral Wells will succumb to an invasion of plague-stricken, blood-thirsty marauders.Continued ...
Wild goose hunt?: Country club looking at other means of removing Canadian geese
A large flock of Canadian geese that have roosted at Holiday Hills Country Club might have management stuck like a duck.Continued ...
- Man charged with drug possession, escape; police arrest man on burglary, burglary warrant charges
- Local News
NRCS to conduct annual meeting Aug. 6 in Mineral Wells
The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Palo Pinto County and the Palo Pinto Soil and Water Conservation District cordially invite the public to attend their 2014 Local Working Group meeting Aug. 6, from 10 a.m. to noon.
Weatherford teen dies following wreck near Brock
WEATHERFORD -- A 16-year-old Weatherford teen injured in a single-vehicle wreck near Brock last week died Tuesday afternoon at John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth, according to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner.
Jordan Paredes, reported by relatives to be in a coma following the wreck, was pronounced dead shortly after 2 p.m. in the trauma intensive care unit, the medical examiner reported.
Perrin FFA members attend Texas FFA convention in FW
Members from the Perrin FFA chapter attended the 86th annual Texas FFA State Convention held July 14-18 in Fort Worth.
Buffalo killer, store shoplifter targets of police, Crime Stoppers this week
Police are seeking leads on the death of a Mineral Wells man’s pet buffalo.
- NRCS to conduct annual meeting Aug. 6 in Mineral Wells
- Local Sports
CCS Athletics Director and head football coach Bryan Horton announced Thursday morning that CCS would not field a varsity football team in 2014 due to a shortage of male athletes. It's a decision Horton said he regretfully saw coming since the school cancelled junior high football a few years ago. The Warriors will start up junior high football again this year with the hope of bringing varsity back by 2016.
No football for CCS in 2014
After a series of administrative meetings from Wednesday afternoon to Thursday morning, Community Christian School's head football coach and athletics director, Bryan Horton, announced that the Warriors' varsity team will not suit up for football in 2014 due to a shortage of student athletes.
Swimming to State
KELLER – The Mineral Wells Water Moccasins are heading to the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation's state meet in College Station, July 31-Aug. 3, after an outstanding performance in the Region 4 Championships that saw seven local swimmer qualify.
Mineral Wells summer track sends 11 to state meet after strong regionals
THE COLONY – The future continues to look bright for Mineral Wells track and field, as 11 members of legendary head coach Jackie Harvey's summer track club punched their tickets to the TAAF state meet in College Station – to be held July 31-Aug. 3 – after a dominant showing at the regional meet in The Colony, July 18-19.
FWIW: Good, clean hate – Ranking the area's best rivalry games of the 2014 football season
By CLINT FOSTER
Football season is fast approaching and with it those glorious games between teams that love to hate each other, which we call rivalries.
I'm speaking, of course, about sports hate – the only beautiful kind. It's the stuff built on history and tradition that inspires simply the fiercest and most entertaining games of every season.
Palo Pinto County and the surrounding area have no shortage of fierce football rivalries.
The University Interscholastic League's realignment often causes new rivalries to be born and old ones to be rekindled. But which rivalries are the area's very best for 2014? The one's you circle your calendar for and make sure you don't miss.
I can think of at least 10.
So, for what it's worth, here's my list of the area's best, can't-miss football rivalries of the upcoming 2014 season.
- No football for CCS in 2014
Millsap ISD names Bean new elementary assistant principal
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WC offers free college preparation through talent search grant
WEATHERFORD – Weatherford College is offering free college preparation through the Educational Talent Search Grant to the following schools: Bridgeport Middle School, Decatur Middle School, Jacksboro High School, Jacksboro Middle School, Tison Middle School, Mineral Wells High School, Mineral Wells Junior High, Santo High School, Santo Middle School, Hall Middle School, Springtown High School, Springtown Middle School, Weatherford High School and the Weatherford High School Ninth Grade Center.
Up close with MWJH student Kimberly Canales-Diego
Kimberly Canales-Diego is an outstanding seventh-grader at Mineral Wells Junior High School.
Link Field honors students with pancake breakfast
Link Field Services Inc. was the site of a pancake breakfast honoring Mineral Wells High School students Kandas Cain, Angel Ortiz, Ian Kurtz and Jake Mason.
- Millsap ISD names Bean new elementary assistant principal
- Online Only
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As the Donald Sterling era in with the Los Angeles Clippers looks to be winding down, many are calling him the worst owner in sports history. From being cheap with the players to his most recent racist comments, it's hard to argue against.
Yet, there are a few owners of athletic teams who can give Sterling a run for title of worst in history.
Police department turns to Facebook for guidance on use of 'negro'
What seems to be a data entry mistake by a small town police department in western New York has turned into a social media firestorm centered around the word "negro" and whether it's acceptable to use in modern society.
- Why a see-through mouse is a big deal for scientists
PASTOR POPHIN: Jesus – the greatest joy of all
The first part of this week was a joyous one for me. I took 10 youth to Lake Mineral Wells State Park for three days of day camping. Camp Adventure was the name of the camp. We discovered the joy of the One who created us: Jesus.
RELIGION BRIEFS: VBS dates announced; Easters in concert
Sparks Spring Advent Christian and Perrin Community Christian announce upcoming Vacation Bible School dates, while Jeff and Sheri Easter concert in Jacksboro is Aug. 1.
PASTOR POPHIN: The joy of unity
Do you enjoy going to church? I mean, do you really enjoy going to church?
- PASTOR POPHIN: Jesus – the greatest joy of all