The Struan Lodge Development Group has written to health chiefs, branding their decision to cease residential care at the Struan Lodge Care Home as ‘inhumane’. Group chair Max Barr raised concerns in his letter that the board of Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) did not discuss the closure of Struan Lodge as a home with residents or staff before releasing news of the closure to the public domain.
Argyll and Bute Council attempted to close Struan Lodge three years ago, and Mr Barr says: “Unfortunately the action now taken shows that the HSCP have learned nothing and are as clueless in dealing with real people as the council and council staff were three years ago. This despite efforts to meet and discuss our submitted Strategy Document which generally seem to have encountered inertia over the last three (wasted) years.
“We have been led to believe that the approved report will go to consultation and discussion with interested parties but nothing in the report supports this view. We would therefore wish to register a strong protest as to how this has been dealt with and would ask the IJB to accept that it is utterly inhumane to pursue the cessation of 24-hour care at Struan Lodge within nine months.”
Mr Barr went on to seek assurances that residents of Struan Lodge will not be evicted from their homes.
His letter goes on to say: “The Struan Lodge Development Group fails to understand how any board can make a decision to cut £8.5m. of services without a proper needs analysis of the long term requirements for adult care.”
The Struan Lodge will be discussed at Argyll and
Bute Council’s Bute and Cowal Area Committee meeting in Rothesay next Tuesday.
Argyll and Bute MSP Michael Russell has written to the chair of the area committee saying: “Once again an attempt is being made to close valued community facilities which provide much needed assistance to fragile and vulnerable individuals without open debate and honest community consultation.
“These plans should have been placed before the community in a genuine consultation exercise and the reasons for them fully and clearly explained. Instead, those responsible are trotting out the same old excuses about over capacity whilst those in the know who work or support the facilities allege that the figures and assumptions are wrong.
“I would urge the area committee to oppose the closures and ask the integrated partnership to initiate a comprehensive consultation, free of the highly technical and over complex language and baffling lists of options that is the hallmark of the local health service when it seeks to get views.
“Only after that process and the indication of community agreement with its outcomes should any changes be made. It is essential that the nature and detail of any such changes should be decided by the consultation, not pre-ordained by officials.
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