Bala care home could close after review

At least one care home may close as Gwynedd council reviews its residential and nursing care for older people.

The council says it plans instead to develop “support services” to allow people to stay in their own homes.

If councillors back the closure plans next week, Bron y Graig residential home at Bala would be first to close.

However, that will not happen until an extra care housing scheme is running, to allow some residents the option of more independent living.

The formal consultation has already been held at Bron y Graig, and a report before councillors on 1 February recommends it is closed once the extra care housing is built.

Hafod y Gest home at Porthmadog is next on the list for a formal consultation on its future.

In addition councillors will be asked to support plans for an initial consultation to identify a site, and a care provider, to develop specialist provision for older people in south Gwynedd.

The closure plans are part of a wider strategic review of residential and nursing care for older people within the county which councillors will discuss next Tuesday.

The council’s corporate director, Dafydd Lewis, said the background to the changes was a projected increase in the number of older people living in Gwynedd.

He said that meant the council would have to address that and the fact there was an “overwhelming desire” of people to live independently in their own homes for as long as possible.

“And to do so with significantly less money than we had in the past,” he said.

Change of focus

Mr Lewis said the council had decided to tackle “huge changes in a proactive way”.

“The council is committed to increasingly promote independence and people will be supported to live at home, or in one of the network of modern extra care housing units we are developing across the county,” he added.

As a result of this “positive change of focus” the amount of care home places within the county would fall significantly.

“The money saved will be channelled into meeting the demand for independent living,” he added.

Part of this change would be the closure of some care homes, he said.

“Arrangements are in place to ensure that all stakeholders including residents and staff are made aware of the proposals,” Mr Lewis said.

“They will have full input into any consultation undertaken if the proposals are approved by councillors,” he added.