Southern health trust to close care homes

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THE Southern Health Trust is to close all its statutory residential homes in the area.

The move comes just days after the Northern Health Trust also announced a similar plan.

This is in line with DUP Health Minister Edwin Poots’ decision to reduce statutory residential care.

In a statement, the Trust said: “The Southern Health and Social Care Trust Board has decided to cease permanent admissions to all five statutory residential homes in the Trust in advance of a detailed consultation process on the future provision of residential care in the area.

“This decision was taken following the Minister’s decision to reduce statutory residential care, and will not affect the large number of people the Trust has placed in private residential care and nursing home care. Currently, the Southern Trust has 262 clients in independent residential homes, 1351 clients in Private Nursing Homes, and less than 80 clients in the Trust’s five statutory residential homes.

“The decision was made at the March Trust Board meeting, and will affect permanent admissions to Crozier House in Banbridge; Skeagh House in Dromore; Slieve Roe in Kilkeel; Cloughreagh House in Bessbrook; and Roxborough House in Moy.

“This decision will not affect respite care or day care currently provided in these homes,” said the spokesperson.

“In June the Trust will be starting a detailed consultation on proposals to close all five residential homes in the area. In the meantime, the Trust Board has decided to cease permanent admissions to all homes to minimise the number of residents who will be affected as the number of homes reduce,” said the Trust statement.

Angela McVeigh, the Trust’s Director of Older People and Primary Care

“We are committed to treating each resident as an individual and working with them and their families and carers to ensure their needs are met through any change to the home in which they currently live,” said Angela McVeigh, the Trust’s Director of Older People and Primary Care said: “Under proposals contained in ‘Transforming Your Care’ and endorsed by the Health Minister in March, the priority of health and social care will be about enabling choice, independence and care within the local community.

“There will be focus on helping people remain at home for as long as possible, and offering more choice and control about the type of care available.

“The Trust has already introduced a range of new enhanced services which support people at home for instance, reablement, access to rapid access clinics for older people and better use of technology such as telemonitoring and telecare all of which help to support people at home for longer.”