‘People will die’ if under-threat home closes

Vulnerable elderly patients will die if a buyer is not found for an under-threat nursing home, relatives fear.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 9th August 2014, 9:00 am
STONEHOUSE OWNERS Vandana Sachdev with Ripan Sachdev at the official opening in January 2011.
STONEHOUSE OWNERS Vandana Sachdev with Ripan Sachdev at the official opening in January 2011.

Families of residents were only told this week that Stonehouse Manor could close on August 18, leaving residents homeless.

A court hearing into the finances of Stonehouse Manor Ltd could see director Vandana Sachdev’s business wound up, stripped of its Care Quality Commission (CQC) licence and the home forced to close.

John Haigh’s mother-in-law, Renee Foggin, 90, is a resident in Stonehouse, in Moorlands Road. She has severe health problems, suffers from dementia and can barely see. Mr Haigh, of Batley, said: “If nothing happens they can’t just be thrown out on the street.

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“Some of these people will die.”

Moving elderly people between homes is known to increase the risk of death. Mr Haigh said he and his wife Linda were only told of the closure risk on Monday. “It was an absolute bombshell. We were appalled. [Mrs Sachdev] must have known for at least six months,” he said.

“There are 30 people in there paying £32,000 a year.”

Mrs Haigh said: “My mother can barely get out of bed. Where will she go? She knows the voices of the staff there. We will have to start all over again.”

Mrs Haigh explained that the state of the home had been good for the first two years, but since Mrs Sachdev had moved down to Coventry, standards had slipped.

Vandana Sachdev, who took over the home in January 2011, refused to comment.

Mr Haigh said he had been told Mrs Sachdev was hoping for an adjournment at the hearing to buy more time.

The Reporter has spoken to a nursing home company which says it is interested in buying the home. The owner, who did not want to be named, said: “We have agreed to take over this business but we can’t do anything until we have the licence.” He said the process could take up to eight weeks.

But Debbie Westhead, CQC’s deputy chief inspector of adult social care in the North, said they were yet to receive an application, but would give it their full attention should they do so.

“Our priority at this time is to work with Kirklees Council to ensure that people living at the home remain safe and if necessary are supported to find suitable alternative accommodation,” she added.

A Kirklees Council spokeswoman said: “We have been in close contact with the care home owner to look at all available options and we are working with families involved.

“Our priority will be to ensure the needs of the residents come first. We will support them and their families and do everything we can to find suitable alternative accommodation quickly.