Greystone acquires Autumn amid a troubling indictment

Florida-based Greystone Healthcare Management has forged ahead with its acquisition of Autumn Health Care despite the central Ohio chain's former owner being indicted on charges of Medicaid fraud, forgery and operating a nursing home without a license.

Greystone announced the acquisition of 10 Autumn Health Care facilities totaling 614 beds in early March, including the 100-bed Zanesville, OH, nursing home, which faces operating license revocation from the Ohio Department of Health and Ohio Attorney General. 

The beleaguered chain's troubles stem from former owner Steven Hitchens, who was indicted in June 2014 on 39 separate corruption charges, according to local reports. 

The Zanesville facility also was indicted on 16 charges, including one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, a first-degree felony; and theft by deception, a fourth-degree felony. 

Hitchens pleaded not guilty and the case has not gone to trial.

Headquartered in Tampa, FL, Greystone has had a presence in Ohio since 2010, when it acquired the Rehabilitation and Health Center of Gahanna. 

In July 2014, it purchased a Columbus hospice and in February, it secured ownership of the Executive Care home health agency.

“These central Ohio facilities truly solidify our presence in the state, and demonstrate our commitment to growth in the region,” Connie Bessler, CEO of Greystone Healthcare Management, said in a prepared statement. 

“We are eager to expand our network and offer our new communities the Greystone difference in patient-centered care.”

Greystone has rebranded the Zanesville property as Zanesville Health and Rehab Center. The company says it has no plans to cut staff. 

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