Reading Borough Council members have this week revealed that it would cost £1 million to bring the Arthur Clark Care Home in Caversham up to modern standards, such as providing each resident their own en-suite facilities. As such, the residents of the home are likely to face a move because the council home they live in is not up to modern design guidelines.
Councillors admitted this week the capital cost of upgrading the building had not been included in the budget for the coming year.
Reading Borough Council must hold a statutory consultation on any proposed closure of a residential home and Monday’s cabinet meeting is expected to propose that.
Residents, their families and staff will be consulted and will consider the alternative option to refurbish the home – although it will be made clear the council’s preferred option is closure.
If the home in Albert Road (RG4 7AN) closes, then the existing 24 residents would then be relocated into other privately run care homes in the locality.
At the same time, day care facilities for elderly people will come under scrutiny and the use of the neighbouring Albert Road Day Centre will also be reviewed.
The council will be holding a Reading-wide consultation with service users, their families, potential users and voluntary organisations to find out their views and requirements as the provision of adult social care changes.
One idea under consideration would be to have one resource centre for day care, respite care and providing for the changing needs of elderly people in Reading.
Reading currently has two – the other and larger being the Phoenix Day Centre in Southcote.
Day care is becoming less popular and its use has declined in the past six months as elderly people use their personal budgets to spend as they choose to meet their own needs.
Lead councillor for adult social care Mike Orton said: “The council has been successfully transforming adult social care for some time, reflecting national best practice, responding to the changing expectations of elderly people and their relatives and improving value for money.
“The provision of services in Reading has already changed considerably. These proposals represent the next steps in development.
“The council is committed to ensuring local people have access to high-quality residential and day care which not only meets the needs of today’s service users, but is able to meet future challenges.
“The cabinet report sets out a series of recommendations, but also makes it clear that service users, their relatives, our staff and the wider public must be given the opportunity to contribute to developing these services as we move forward.
“We are very well aware that the frail, elderly people who use these services find any change difficult.
“Following the consultation and subject to future decisions, we will ensure we do everything we can to manage any change sensitively, taking into account the needs of the service users and involving their families.”
Leader of the council, Cllr Jo Lovelock told the Reading Post the council remained committed to providing day care services.
Source: Get Reading.co.uk