After two years of study and an exhaustive strategic planning effort, the Cedar Village Board of Trustees has voted to sell its Mason campus to a highly-respected operator of senior living and skilled nursing facilities. The agreement will enable all current residents to stay at Cedar Village, regardless of their insurance or payment strategy; the agreement also includes a rent control provision. After the change of ownership, Jewish programming at Cedar Village will continue, including Shabbat observance and the celebration of Jewish holidays. Jewish themes and artwork will continue to be displayed. Cedar Village will continue to offer pastoral care from Rabbis and Cantor. Cedar Village will also continue to make high-quality, freshly-prepared Kosher meals available to residents whose level of Jewish observance requires Kosher food. Our renowned Opening Minds Through Art program will continue, as well as many other programs that make Cedar Village the special place that it is.
Many factors made this difficult decision necessary. A perfect storm of plummeting reimbursement from Medicare and other payers, mounting capital repair costs on the 21-year-old campus, and continuing change in the needs and preferences of our older adults, has led to millions of dollars in operating losses at Cedar Village over the past few years. The Mason campus is no longer financially sustainable as a standalone entity. Retaining ownership would only worsen the situation – increasing the debt and decreasing Cedar Village’s ability to advance its mission.
We are very fortunate to have found a senior living organization that is committed to high-quality care and to preserving much of the Jewish culture and programming at Cedar Village. The new owners already operate more than two dozen other high-quality retirement facilities, which gives them the scale to operate the Mason campus with less administrative expenses and provides them with the capital dollars needed to furnish the updates that Cedar Village residents want. Cedar Village Board Members have visited several of these facilities and were impressed. Equally important, the new owners have offered a premium price because they value the Mason campus so highly.
By selling now, at a premium, and stopping the operating losses, the Cedar Village sale will create resources that will be invested in new and innovative ways to make Cincinnati a great place to be an older Jewish adult. The sale of Cedar Village is not the end of the Cedar Village mission. It is an opportunity to realize that mission in ways that serve even more older Jewish adults. And it is important to note that the Cedar Village facility will still be a great option, as the Board and the new operators have worked hard to ensure the facility will continue to meet the needs of older Jewish adults moving forward.
Nor is Cedar Village alone in its efforts. Community collaboration enabled the recent launch of AgeWell Cincinnati, a central solution that links older adults, their family members, friends and caregivers to community resources. Now, the Jewish Federation and Jewish Foundation have launched a strategic planning effort to understand and adapt cutting-edge approaches to the changing needs of older adults. This effort includes all the community agencies that serve older adults. And it will consider both new facilities and services that don’t require new facilities.
We understand that news of the change of ownership of the Cedar Village’s Mason campus will feel like a loss to many in our community. Painful as it was, this was the right decision for our community and for our older adults; to have done otherwise would have been irresponsible. But we also want to hear your concerns and answer your questions. Toward that end, Cedar Village and its community partners will host a community meeting on Wednesday, April 25th at 6:30 p.m. at Cedar Village. This meeting is open to all members of the community. We hope you can attend. More information is also available through the Cedar Village website. To find a set of FAQs, please click here. If you have further questions, please contact our President and CEO, Dan Fagin.