Sunday 17 December 2017
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Kent County Council care home closure plan approved

Plans to close care homes for elderly people across Kent have been approved.

Eleven care homes are affected and Kent County Council (KCC) said each site had been considered separately.

The changes are still subject to a scrutiny process and cannot be implemented until 24 January at the earliest, KCC said.

Councillor Graham Gibbens has guaranteed that all people currently using services will be provided for before any homes close their doors.

The cabinet spokesman for adult social services said: "Before we started, we knew that we had to plan for the future.

"We know that a demographic change is under way and that in the years to come more over 65s, more over 85s and more people with dementia will need care."
'Future needs'

He added that he was "acutely aware" the proposals had brought uncertainty for people.

And he said: "Clearly, there will be people who are unhappy that the decisions don't reflect their views. The key issue for me, however, has been the need to balance today's needs with the demands of the future."

It was agreed that The Limes at Dartford, Sampson Court at Deal and Ladesfield at Whitstable would close, but services would be provided by private and voluntary sector organisations.

Wayfarers at Sandwich is to be sold as a going concern.

Services provided at Blackburn Lodge at Sheerness, Doubleday Lodge at Sittingbourne and Kiln Court at Faversham will be run through a partnership arrangement with an independent sector provider.

Bowles Lodge at Hawkhurst, Cornfields at Dover and Manorbrooke at Dartford will be closed and the sites will be used for extra care housing schemes, built in partnership with district councils.

A twelfth care home, the Dorothy Lucy Centre at Maidstone, will be kept as it is for future consideration.

Under the plans, KCC is set to save about £2m each year.

Source BBC