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Skye constituency MSP Kate Forbes says NHS Highland has now essentially taken over the running of the coronavirus-stricken care home in Portree where seven residents have now died.
In a joint statement issued last night (Wednesday), the health board and the operator of Home Farm Care Home in Portree, HC-One, said they had agreed a partnership approach to quickly and effectively address the situation at the home.
This follows an unannounced inspection by the Care Inspectorate of the independent home, which was said to have raised serious concerns.
But in a social media post earlier today (Thursday), Ms Forbes said this means that NHS Highland has ‘essentially moved into running the home’, providing management, nursing and direct care to ensure that residents and patients are getting the best possible care during this difficult time.
‘Since the outbreak was first announced, NHS Highland has been offering staffing support, but today confirmed that they are providing a lot more than just helping with staffing cover because of the concerns identified by the Care Inspectorate,’ added Ms Forbes in her online post on social media.
The Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch constituency MSP also said she was aware of local concern that the community is not getting the latest figures concerning deaths and that she does expect public health agencies to keep the public informed.
However, she added that bereaved families need to be informed first out of respect, before the public is informed.
‘Whilst I can only thank the front line staff for their care in the home, there are serious concerns about the home itself,’ continued Ms Forbes. ‘Issues have been identified by the Care Inspectorate of a concerning nature.’
Asked to confirm if it was now correct to say NHS Highland is now in charge of running Home Farm care home, a spokesperson for the health board told the Lochaber Times: ‘NHS Highland has agreed with HC-One to provide enhanced assistance by deploying additional NHS resources, including social care management, nursing leadership and direct care with immediate effect; with the aim of improving and sustaining the appropriate quality of care for the residents.’