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Care investment will support happier, healthier home lives

Published Friday, 22 June 2018

new care facility in Blantyre will include a centre of excellence for training in health and social care which will support new employment opportunities for local people

Councillors have given the go-ahead to a significant investment in care facilities.

The move will transform the care of the elderly in Hamilton / Blantyre.

The investment is the first phase in a remodelling of care facilities across South Lanarkshire that will help older people to live independently at home for as long as possible – which research shows most want to do.

The new facility, which will be built as part of the approved first phase, will serve the wider Hamilton area. It will support older people, their families and carers, providing transitional care between hospital and home as part of a wider package that will continue to include longer-term care home places and respite care.

The services will be delivered by a team of health and social care professionals, who will focus on helping individuals who become unwell to avoid hospital admission where possible. Where people have required a spell in hospital, they will be supported to get them back on their feet by offering rehabilitation in a transitional care setting.

Councillor John Bradley, the chair of the council’s Social Work Resources Committee, said: “Working closely across Health and Social Care, we have developed a new model of care that will enhance our ability to meet changing care needs, particularly in light of significant population change over the last 20 years.”

And Val de Souza, the council's Executive Director, Health and Social Care, said: “The evidence is that most people would prefer to stay in their own home for as long as possible and live in a community they know with friends and family near at hand. This new model of transitional care will support that ambition."

On Wednesday 20 June, the council’s Social Work committee approved plans for the first phase of development of the new care facility model focusing on the Hamilton and Blantyre area.

It will focus on a new-build facility on a site at St Joseph’s in Blantyre to replace Larkhall’s McWhirter House and Blantyre’s Kirkton House – both older buildings that are no longer fit to meet the level of need of individuals with complex health and care requirements.

Councillor John Ross, Leader of South Lanarkshire Council, said: “We are introducing this model of care in the Hamilton area first because that is where the need is most pressing. I am grateful that councillors of all parties have been supportive of the new model in principle, and we will bring forward detailed plans for other localities in due course.”