Court decides on John Aird Closure

High court allows Council to close care home

Yvonne Hossack - 'devestated'

Hounslow Council will be allowed to go ahead with the planned closure of John Aird House.

Solicitor Yvonne Hossack had applied for an injunction preventing the closure of the Green Dragon Lane residential care home, claiming that the health of residents would be endangered by moving them into alternative accomodation. Closure of care homes elsewhere in the country has been followed by highter than expected levels of mortality.

However Hounslow Council claimed that this was because incorrect procedures had been followed or the new homes were not yet ready to care for new residents. They also stated that John Aird House was no longer a suitable facility and that higher levels of care could be offered in existing homes elsewhere in the borough.

In the High Court today the presiding judge gave the go-ahead for closure, stating that the closure was permissable providing that the Council followed correct procedures to minimize the risk.

Yvonne Hossack, who had organised the legal challenge to closure, told that she was devestated. "It seems that it's perfectly alright to kill people" she said.

The decision marks the end of the legal challenge to closure of the care home. It is not known yet when residents will begin to be moved.

In September, Hounslow Council released this statement on the proposed closure of John Aird House.

There is no intention to reduce the quality or quantity of services for the elderly.

However we have a duty to provide for the needs of all of our elderly in the borough and most tell us they want the support to remain in their own homes, hence the falling need for this kind of traditional residential care.

The Government's National Care Standards Commission have made it clear that they will not register John Aird House unless very major works are carried out which include rewiring, replacement heating systems,wheelchair access to bedrooms and disability adaptations to bathrooms.

We will be doing everything possible to ensure that individual personal and medical needs are taken into account before we progress with any move to close the home.

28 Oct 2003

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