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Cabinet set to discuss proposals following a consultation held on a Care Home located in Towcester

09 January 2024

West Northamptonshire Council’s (WNC) Cabinet will meet next week to discuss the outcome of a public consultation regarding the future of Ridgway House care home.

The care home located in Towcester is owned and managed by the Council, providing residential care to 17 residents who currently occupy the home, out of a total 25 rooms available. This is primarily due to the inadequacy of its design and amenities in meeting the requirements of individuals seeking residential care and support in their later years.

While the demand for registered care homes has remained relatively constant over the years, the nature of care required has evolved, with an increasing number of residents needing nursing care as opposed to the residential care that Ridgway House is currently able to provide. Due to the building being old and its design, it is difficult to meet these more complex care needs and falls short of today's accessibility and facility requirements stipulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) for new care home constructions, including infection control audits showing challenges with the environment to provide individual personalised care due to their being no en-suite facilities.

The public consultation on future proposals for Ridgeway House launched in October 2023, seeking the views of its residents, staff and members of the public.

Thank you to all those who responded to the survey, we received over 180 responses and it provided a real understanding into what matters most to those who currently live at Ridgeway House and their families, colleagues as well as local residents.

Understandably, the news of a potential closure of a care home may have caused worry and concern for residents, their relatives and colleagues. This is recognised within the responses, with many comments referring to keeping the care home to remain open to avoid disruption for those who currently live at Ridgeway House, ensuring they remain safe and settled. However, responses also recognised that people living in the home needed better facilities to support them in future.

I can assure everyone that our priority is the safety of those we care for and being able to provide the right care for them, in the right environment; it is essential for us to be able to do this both now and in the future. Due to the condition of the building and the challenges we have around its general maintenance and ongoing suitability for residents, after extensive consideration and a review of the options available, the recommendation put forward to Cabinet is to close Ridgeway House Care Home as part of a safe closure programme. Taking this decision now will enable us to work with residents and their families in a more planned and productive way, to find a suitable, alternative setting that is right for them and their needs, instead of the possibility of needing to secure alternative accommodation at short notice.
Cllr Matt Golby, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health at WNC

Following this feedback, Cabinet are being asked to consider the proposal to close the care home as part of a safe closure programme. Depending on approval from Cabinet, the Council will work closely with current residents and their families, to move to alternative residential care accommodation providing a suitable and safe environment to meet their individual needs. At present, no plans have been agreed for the future of the site and this will be looked into following Cabinets decision.

To read the cabinet report, please see the Agenda for Cabinet on Tuesday 16 January 2024, 6pm

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