Fears raised for Oban care home

on the In­te­grated Joint Board

The Oban Times - - News - LOUISE GLEN lglen@oban­times.co.uk

EADER Glinn, north Ar­gyll’s only au­thor­ity-led nurs­ing and care home, is ‘on a list’ for ‘dis­cus­sions’ in re­gard to its fu­ture.

The news comes as the newly-formed NHS High­land and Ar­gyll and Bute Coun­cil In­te­grated Joint Board for health and so­cial care (IJB) de­cided to close two iden­ti­cally-run homes on Bute and in Dunoon.

Pre­vi­ous at­tempts by Ar­gyll and Bute Coun­cil to close Eader Glinn were op­posed by the com­mu­nity.

Ac­cord­ing to Ar­gyll and Bute MSP Michael Rus­sell, the re­cent clo­sures in the south of Ar­gyll held ‘flawed con­sul- tations’ and made de­ci­sions on stop­ping ser­vices at the homes long be­fore the process had fin­ished.

Mr Rus­sell has crit­i­cised the newly-formed board say­ing the pub­lic has lost faith al­ready and will not place its trust in the IJB.

He said: ‘Last Tues­day a mem­ber of [NHS High­land] staff ad­mit­ted that the con­sul­ta­tion process an­nounced re­gard­ing these clo­sures was a sham and con­firmed that the de­ci­sion to close had been made on June 22 be­fore the process was even an­nounced.’

In early July, The Oban Times asked for a copy of the min­utes of the June IJB meet­ing. The news­pa­per was told min­utes would not be avail­able un­til Au­gust and was there­fore un­able to ver­ify ru­mours on the clo­sure de­ci­sion. Mr Rus­sell con­tin­ued: ‘It is ut­terly un­ac­cept­able for an ac­count­able pub­lic body to be­have in this way. Con­sul­ta­tion does not mean at­tempt­ing to per­pe­trate a con­fi­dence trick on the com­mu­nity by us­ing warm words to cover up ac­tions which are strongly op­posed by those to whom the body is ac­count­able.

‘The IJB has got off to a very bad start and it bodes very ill for the de­liv­ery of vi­tal health and com­mu­nity care ser­vices in our area.’

Mr Rus­sell also de­manded that the IJB ‘un­der­take a re­view to en­sure that your gover­nance is rad­i­cally im­proved and con­firm that there will be no rep­e­ti­tion of such ac­tions’.

An NHS High­land spokesman on be­half of the IJB, said in re­sponse: ‘The part­ner­ship is trans­form­ing ser­vices to meet the chang­ing needs of com­mu­ni­ties across Ar­gyll and Bute and we must also op­er­ate within the bud­get that is avail­able.

‘We are work­ing closely with ser­vice users, car­ers, staff and stake­hold­ers so that we can con­tinue to pro­vide ef­fec­tive, safe, sus­tain­able and pa­tient­fo­cused ser­vices.’

IJB in­com­ing chair­man Coun­cil­lor Kieron Green said: ‘Con­sul­ta­tion with ser­vice users, staff and com­mu­ni­ties is vi­tal if we are to meet the needs of the peo­ple of Ar­gyll and Bute.

‘I will con­tinue to look care­fully at the cur­rent re­design­ing of ser­vices. I can­not al­ter de­ci­sions al­ready made, but it is im- por­tant any changes be­ing made re­flect all the in­for­ma­tion avail­able. Steps must be taken now to en­sure the pub­lic has the op­por­tu­nity to com­ment on fu­ture pro­pos­als at the ear­li­est pos­si­ble stage.

‘Al­low­ing peo­ple to re­ceive the care they need in their own homes is a key pri­or­ity na­tion­ally.

‘How­ever, for some, res­i­den­tial care will still be the best op­tion.

‘In Oban, our staff at Eader Glinn care home are do­ing fan­tas­tic work, but I would wel­come sug­ges­tions for ad­dress­ing the short­com­ings of the ex­ist­ing build­ings.’

Should Eader Glinn be closed? Stay con­nected by join­ing the con­ver­sa­tion on The Oban Times’ Face­book page.

THE IN­TE­GRATED Joint Board (IJB) of NHS High­land and Ar­gyll and Bute Coun­cil has come into sharp fo­cus this week af­ter it made a de­ci­sion to close down two nurs­ing homes in Ar­gyll.

But do peo­ple re­ally know what it is? Ni­amh Adams McGilp took to the streets of Lochgilp­head to find out if peo­ple were aware of the changes.

Ask­ing whether peo­ple were aware of the what the IJB was and what they thought of it, Ni­amh also asked peo­ple what they thought was the big­gest con­cern fac­ing health at pre­sent. This is what they told us.

Pa­tri­cia Watkins from Loch

gilp­head didn’t know about the IJB, but thought it was a good idea to get folks to­gether.

She said: ‘If they are all un­der one roof they’ll prob­a­bly be able to com­mu­ni­cate bet­ter.

‘ Wait­ing times are prob­a­bly the big­gest is­sue for me. You get good treat­ment but you could book in at the doc­tor and wait 35 min­utes be­fore they see you. You could be in the hos­pi­tal at 10 and not be seen un­til 11. Just the de­lays re­ally.

‘I can’t re­ally com­plain.’

Shirley Nicol­son, Lochgilp

head, knew what the IJB was and thought that ‘ them be­ing to­gether makes less room for a loss in com­mu­ni­ca­tion’.

She said: ‘ I’d say the big­gest is­sue at the mo­ment is not hav­ing enough spe­cial­ity nurses, if any.

‘ It’s not fair mak­ing el­derly peo­ple travel to Glas­gow to see a spe­cial­ity nurse. There should be more em­ployed here, maybe even a clinic.’

Avril Lock­hart from Mid Ar

gyll didn’t know what the IJB was. She said: ‘ Hope­fully they’ll be able to co- or­di­nate ser­vices bet­ter. Hav­ing worked in so­cial ser­vices, I know what it’s like.

‘ Hope­fully they’ll be able to man­age spend­ing bud­gets bet­ter if they’re work­ing to­gether.

‘ I’d say the main is­sue is lack of fund­ing. There’s not enough ser­vices for the peo­ple that need them.’

Fiona Wal­lace, Lochgilp­head, said: ‘In prin­ci­ple the idea works, but I think in prac­tice it is go­ing to take longer and be more com­plex than an­tic­i­pated.

‘I can hon­estly say I have had no is­sues, no neg­a­tive ex­pe­ri­ences with the cur­rent sys­tem.’

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