Berwickshire elder care is in need of a financial boost

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Scottish Borders Council has been called on to provide more financial provision for care home places in Berwickshire.

The plea comes after the Scottish Government published its ‘Full Report on the Future of Residential Care for Older People in Scotland’, in which it recommends that more funding should be put towards improving and extending care accommodation in Scotland.

A number of residents have already voiced their concerns about the lack of care home places in the area.

Now John Lamont, Conservative MSP, is calling for the number of care home places to be extended to cover a predicted increase in demand.

He said:“This report makes several important points, not least of all that we need to see investment in improving and extending existing care accommodation. The coming years will see a huge increase in the number of old people we have in Scotland, and we need to start planning now to make sure we have the required infrastructure.

“There is also a need to increase the current care accommodation provided for the elderly in Berwickshire. I have spoken to many of my constituents who are unhappy with the number of care home spaces currently being provided in the Berwickshire area.

“The only way this will happen is if we start to prioritise it in our budgeting, and I believe that the council and Scottish Government need to start investing more money in every care home place. In addition to increasing the current capacity of care homes, this would not only vastly improve the living standards of our elderly, but also ensure that we are ready for the future.”

In response, SBC’s Chief Social Work Officer Elaine Torrance said: “Scottish Borders Council undertook a full review of care and support arrangements for older people in 2009. Commissioning proposals which arose from this review were agreed by Council in 2010 and more recently were reflected in the Older People Joint Commissioning Strategy.

“SBC aims to provide a range of care and support options for individuals, including new models of care such as extra care housing and housing with care facilities which promote independence and autonomy and, in some instances, provide an alternative to residential care provision. We currently provide or commission residential care placements across Berwickshire, including in Eyemouth and Coldstream, and are presently developing housing with care facilities in Eyemouth and Duns.”