Closed care home workers praised by resident’s son

THE son of a woman who was forced out of the care home at which she was living has praised the dedication of staff who worked to look after residents on a voluntary basis.

Chris Howard, of Llangyndeyrn, re-homed his mum in a Llanelli home just hours before she was due to be moved out of the Hafan Tywi care home in Ferryside.

Last week the Journal reported on the sudden closure of the home, after a court order to close it was brought by Welsh ministers. The order came after an application by the CSSIW care inspectorate.

“The staff at the home showed extreme devotion to their duty of care,” said Mr Howard.

“They only remained there out of this sense of duty towards residents.”

But he added he was unhappy at the suddenness of the home’s closure.

“My mother is totally incapable of managing her own affairs and looking after her well-being,” he said.

“The process must have been going on for months, to only give us a few days notice — and over a bank holiday weekend — is extremely sad.

“If they’ve done it once, they can do it again.

“To give social services their dues, they have been very involved in finding alternative accommodation.

“But there are a lot of unanswered questions here, I am not impressed with the way it’s all been handled, and neither are several other people.”

The home was owned by Joy Loate, who last week told the Journal that she had put £200,000 of her own money into improvements.

But a spokeswoman for the Care and Social Services Inspectorate for Wales, said it had a “number” of concerns over the financial viability of the home.

“[These concerns] reached a crisis point when staff were not paid at the end of March,” she said.

“Against the background of concerns about the effective operation of the home, there had been a high level of monitoring by CSSIW, working in co-ordination with the local authority under the escalating concerns procedures over several months.”

The spokeswoman described the staff’s continuation of care as “commendable”, but added: “Since there was no guarantee of them receiving proper payment, the situation was not sustainable.”

A Carmarthen council spokeswoman reiterated that the care home was privately owned, and it had no responsibility its running.

She said the authority was made aware of concerns a week before the emergency closure order was made by CSSIW.

“We immediately took steps to put in staff to support the staff at the home, and in anticipation of a possible closure we had reviewed each resident’s needs and identified suitable places in other care homes so that we would be ready to act should any closure order be made,” she said.

“We did keep families informed of our involvement as soon as we were made aware of the concerns.”