When the Gino J. Merli Veterans Center opened as the Northeastern Veterans Center in January 1994, it held the distinction of being the first newly constructed home for veterans within the state system. In July 2002, it was renamed the Gino J. Merli Veterans Center, in honor of the noted World War II hero and Medal of Honor recipient from northeastern Pennsylvania.
It was built on the site of the former Scranton State General Hospital. The old building was razed and ground was broken for the new four-story Center on May 31, 1991.
The Center provides 196 beds, including 156 for full nursing care and 40 for dementia. The major difference in the types of residency is the level of care:
- The Personal Care Unit provides food and shelter, medical and nursing care, ancillary therapeutic services, and recreational Activities. These residents receive a supervised, protective environment. When needed, assistance is provided for eating, bathing, shaving, and other activities of daily living which do not require constant nursing care.
- The Nursing Care Unit provides 24-hour care, seven days a week. Residents receive a complete range of clinical services under the direction of physicians and other licensed health care professionals.
- The Dementia Care Unit provides long-term care in a safe and secure environment. The focus is to provide specialized care tailored to meet the needs of these unique residents in an atmosphere that promotes sensory stimulation.
Additional services of a specialized nature, such as psychological evaluations and podiatry are provided as necessary to maintain a resident’s quality of life. All residents receive medical, clinical and nursing services; drug and nutritional therapy; rehabilitative services such as physical therapy, occupational therapy and recreational therapy; speech therapy; dental services; social services, transportation, housekeeping, maintenance, business management and related services.