North-south divide in Camden's elderly care plans

I HAVE three main concerns about the current consultation to sell off a number of old peoples homes in order to build two care homes in the north of the borough. Firstly, if this is indeed the main chance the council has to shape care for older people,

I HAVE three main concerns about the current consultation to sell off a number of old peoples' homes in order to build two care homes in the north of the borough.

Firstly, if this is indeed the main chance the council has to shape care for older people, I note that the council is pressing ahead with plans to keep care in the north of the borough, rather than thinking about people in the south.

The relatives and the next of kin of the elderly will have to travel from the far end of Camden to visit their loved ones in the north of the borough. This discourages people from visiting as often as they could, on the ground of distance as well as cost. Consequently, I fear that it will trigger emotional problems for both the elderly and their relatives or next of kin.

Secondly, the consultation paper also falls short on vulnerable people with mental health needs. It indicated that there would be extra care sheltered facilities but Councillor Martin Davies (the Tory executive member for adult social care) was not precise about the options there would be to accommodate people with mental health needs.


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The third issue is that the outcome of the consultation paper (February and May 2007) clearly highlighted that the residents of Camden wanted to have publicly accountable services.

The older people of Camden wanted the two homes to be built and run by Camden and not by a profit-making company. The elderly and vulnerable know that privatisation means higher fees, and a reduction in resources and staff, whilst the company works for the maximisation of profits. Residents do not want to go down that route.

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I wonder why Cllr Davies and the Tory/Lib Dem coalition is favouring the option that clearly means privatisation. He and the executive members are making their decision next week.

Cllr Syed Hoque

Haverstock ward,

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