Saturday 22 January 2022

Complaints about nursing home closures flood in, vulnerable elderly affected

At least 500 frail elderly people have been forced to move to a different nursing home because their own home is being shut down due to government policy.

Patients’ organisation NPCF and groups representing the elderly have sounded the alarm and want junior health minister Martin van Rijn to intervene.

‘People are becoming upset and uneasy and I think too little is being done to prevent that,’ said NPCF director Wilna Wind on Radio 1 news. ‘These are very vulnerable people,’ she said. ‘It is as if the accountant is boss. This approach is unnecessary and irresponsible.’

Instead of leaving it up to individual care providers, a regional plan should be made to assess the number of people needing residential care, she said.

Policy

Hundreds of care homes are being closed because the government wants people to live independently for longer, with the help of family, friends and home care agencies.

This means fewer people are being admitted to residential care, leading to surplus places and closures.

Aad Koster of residential care provider association Actiz told Radio 1 time and money is being invested in making sure the interests of residents are paramount. ‘But we are talking about a lot of people and it is not always possible to take everyone’s wishes into account,’ he said.

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