Intermediate care beds to be replaced with home services in sell-off

NOTTS will lose 70 intermediate care beds when county council care homes are sold. The council is set to sell-off its 12 care homes by September, and the new owners will not be expected to provide the intermediate care beds.

The beds are for elderly people who no longer require hospital treatment but need further help to regain their independence.

The council will instead provide services such as occupational therapy and confidence building in people’s homes.

It will use £1 million the government has given to the authority and its NHS partners to help offer ‘reablement services’ in people’s homes.

These services are designed help people recuperate at home, for example if they have been treated for a fall, and help prevent hospitalisation.

The government believes too many people are re-admitted to hospital within 30 days of leaving.

Councillor Stuart Wallace, deputy cabinet member for adult social care and health, said: “By moving to providing these services in people’s homes, where we can, we will be able to provide better, more tailored and personalised care and support.”

He added: “It will also improve the council’s chances of achieving better value from the sale of the homes as there is no requirement for the new owners to provide these services.”

Mr Wallace said this extra cash would go towards the care of vulnerable people.

If a patient is assessed as needing an intermediate care bed the council will look to “spot purchase” one from the private sector.

The authority hopes to re-deploy staff who provide intermediate care.

David Hamilton, council service director, said potential buyers of the homes had not been “interested” in offering intermediate care.

But he added the council had already been looking to switch to providing the service in people’s homes.

Day care will also no longer be provided at the homes after the sell-off.

The authority is currently reviewing its day care provision and deciding where day centres will be.