A CORK TD has called for the HSE to intervene after a private nursing home has announced it intends to close after 34 years in business.
Strawhall Nursing Home in Fermoy, which was first established in 1988, said in a statement on its website that it had made the “very difficult decision” to close.
The nursing home, which has a maximum capacity of 30 beds, said “the viability of our small family-run nursing home is now facing a number of significant challenges which unfortunately it cannot overcome.”
Cork East TD Seán Sherlock described the decision to close the nursing home as “devastating” and called on the HSE to intervene.
“This is a vital service and a mainstay of nursing home care in our community,” Mr Sherlock said. “The HSE must intervene to see if the service can be retained.
There aren’t enough nursing home or respite beds in North Cork at present.”
In its statement, Strawhall Nursing Home said the decision to close had been difficult and had not been taken lightly. The statement thanked staff past and present, and residents, families, friends, and the community.
“During this difficult transition we will work with residents, staff, and families.
"We will endeavour to manage this process with the same integrity by which we have always delivered care.”
A representative of Strawhall Nursing Home told The Echo they had no further comment beyond what had been already announced on their website.They declined to comment on how many residents the home currently has, or when the closure will occur.
Nursing Homes Ireland CEO Tadhg Daly told The Echo the closure was a sign of the times, and a warning of potential future closures which shouldn’t be ignored.
“We have seen 12 closures of nursing homes in the last number of weeks, all across the country,” Mr Daly said.
“There has been a number of reviews and reports of the Fair Deal pricing mechanism for a number of years by the Government and despite the consistent message that nursing home care is underfunded, the Government and the Department of Health haven’t addressed it, and what we’re seeing now is the really unfortunate and in some cases tragic results of that inaction.”
Mr Daly said there would need to be a fundamental and urgent review of the pricing mechanism under the Fair Deal scheme.
“If action isn’t taken, our fear is that there could be more closures to come in the weeks, months and years ahead,” he added