May Nast arrives for dinner at RiverWalk, an independent senior housing facility, in New York, Thursday, April 1, 2021. Credit: Seth Wenig / AP

Colonial Healthcare, a nursing home and assisted living facility in Lincoln, is planning to reduce its number of long-term care beds.

The move will reduce the number of beds from 86 to 26, according to WABI news.

The decision is partly due to the cost of wages for frontline workers and Gov. Janet Mills’ vaccine requirements for health care workers, according to Andrea Otis-Higgins, the chief operating officer for First Atlantic Healthcare, which manages Colonial Healthcare.

“The unwillingness of many staff to vaccinate, coupled with the looming final state deadline for full vaccination of healthcare workers was a significant factor,” Otis-Higgins said in a press release, WABI reported.

The nursing home will instead function as an assisted living facility.

Otis-Higgins said that the facility has notified staff, as well as its current residents, and that the facility will work to provide current residents with the appropriate services.

A number of nursing homes across the state have reduced services, or closed completely, since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, with staff shortages and lack of funding driving the closures.

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Leela Stockley

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley, her puppy Percy and staying active in the Maine outdoors.