Updates to this story, including a list of nearby Ray County facilities will be provided as they become available.

Updates have been provided to include comments from Jeanne Buckman.

After the recent announcement of changes coming to the Excelsior Springs Hospital's services, many will be looking for a new place for their older loved ones to live.

CEO Kristen DeHart said staff sent each resident a letter which contained a list of nearby facilities. She said ESH staff members have responded to the announcement amazingly well. They have stepped up to offer assistance and answer questions from residents, family members and caretakers.

Jeanne Buckman said she will be assisting the residents in the independent living and residential care facilities in their quest to find a new home.

She said social service workers currently work with residents and their families in assisting all those impacted find a new residential facility that will meet their needs.

"We also have social service workers that are here, we're bringing one from out of retirement," she said. "She's coming back next week to help the independent living and the assisted living residents. She will start on May 14. She will be visiting with residents and their families. She will stay here until every resident has found a place to go."

Buckman said social services workers at the convalescent center also will work diligently to help all the resident find new homes.

She said that needing assistance from within the independent living and assisted living facilities can contact her at 816-629-2768 or by emailing jbuckman@esmc.org.

Those needing assistance from within the convalescent center can contact Mendy Wibbenmeyer at 816-629-3685 or by emailing mwibbenmeyer@esmc.org.

A list of assisted living facilities provided to The Standard by ESH can be found here.

A list of assisted independent senior housing in the Northland provided to The Standard by ESH can be found here.

Buckman said staff will do everything possible to assist their residents. Staff members have even been saving boxes for those needing to pack their belongings. Buckman said they will save these boxes, along with ones they received from the numerous shipments the hospital receives each day, for their residents.

"We've got maintenance here and we've told our residents that we will do everything in our ability to help move them," she said. " I have personally offered to help my residents in the independent living room to help pack."

Lois Bender-Sowarde with A Place for Mom said for those already on Medicaid, or plan to apply, the process could be quite different. She said they should visit medicare.gov to find a nearby facility that takes Medicaid. They then should call the facility to see if they have any Medicaid beds available.

For those on private pay, Bender-Sowarde said she could help assist them on an individual basis.

“There’s not a lot in Excelsior Springs, but we can find some probably in Kearney and places like that would have some other options for them,” she said. “Probably within 20 miles or so, we can find something for them. “

She can be contacted at 316-883-3422.

Buckman said most of the residents and their family members have been wonderful.

"The residents have just been fabulous," she said. "Are they upset? Absolutely they are. I mean, I get it."

DeHart and Buckman said they will do everything they can to help their residents.

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