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Carlyle Group License Approved in Wisconsin to run 8 Manorcare Nursing Homes Statewide

In a decision that marks a new era in nursing-home ownership in Wisconsin, a license was approved Thursday to a private equity company to run eight Manorcare facilities statewide.

A spokeswoman for the state Department of Health and Family Services said the one-year probationary license will take effect after Manor Care notifies the department that its ownership transfer deal has closed with Carlyle Group, one of the nation’s largest private equity companies.

Rick Rump, assistant vice president of corporate communications for Manor Care headquarters in Toledo, Ohio, said he expects the transaction to be closed by the end of the year. The transaction includes similar pending buyouts in other states.

Five of the eight Manor Care facilities are located in Northeastern Wisconsin, with two in Green Bay.

The decision comes three days after two of the state’s biggest lobbying groups testified during a public hearing at the State Capitol against the $6 billion buyout.

Their main concerns were whether the corporate structure would be so complex that patients would have difficulty bringing lawsuits against the company for negligent injury or wrongful death, and whether ownership changes would result in declining quality of care.

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