Statutory Residential Care Homes: Update


Board approves Trusts’ consultation proposals on future of Statutory Residential Care Homes.

stat homes

The Health and Social Care Board last month (19 May) approved for further consultation, the Health and Social Care Trusts’ proposals on the future role and function of their Statutory Residential Care Homes for older people.

The Minister, Simon Hamilton and the Board have recently written to all the current permanent residents and reassured them that the Trusts’ proposals will not affect them and that they would be able to remain in their existing home for as long as they wish, and as long as their care needs can continue to be met there.

Whilst current permanent residents in the Homes are not affected by these new proposals, the Board does have a continued responsibility to plan for the future and therefore the changing trends and desires of people must be taken into account.

Consultation on proposals for change will commence during the summer, and will outline that some of the Trusts’ Statutory Residential Care Homes will be retained, some will be considered for alternative use and others are proposed for closure.  No final decisions have yet been made on any of the homes. Further details on proposals for each home are at the bottom of this article. 

It is important to note that these proposals do not affect Nursing Homes or Independent Sector Residential Care Homes.

Speaking about the latest developments, Fionnuala McAndrew, Director of Social Care and Children with the Health and Social Care Board said: “I acknowledge that this has been a difficult time for residents, their relatives, carers and staff and the wider communities supporting statutory residential homes for older people.

“I have listened carefully to the views of all those who have taken the time to contribute to this process of engagement.  I want to thank everyone who contributed and, in particular, the residents, their relatives and staff of the residential homes that I visited over the last year.”

“I am confident that the recommendations set out in the Trusts’ proposals will help us achieve a balance between continuing to care for the current residents of statutory homes appropriately, as well as progressing plans for addressing the future needs and preferences of our population of Northern Ireland.”

Non Admissions Positions

In June last year, the Board decided that the position regarding permanent admissions be maintained until Trusts’ proposals for change were agreed.  There will be no immediate change to current admissions positions therefore until after local Trusts’ consultations have taken place.

Background to proposals

In May 2013, Minister Poots, asked for a review of proposals to reduce the number of statutory residential care homes and report on how services could be reformed.

Between November 2013 and March 2014, the Health and Social Care Board conducted a public consultation on the criteria which would be used to assess future accommodation needs for older people and the role and function of statutory residential homes to meet those needs.  Subsequently, local assessments of the need for services for older people were carried out by Local Commissioning Groups (LCGs) to provide context for any changes. Trusts used the agreed criteria and the local assessments to evaluate each of the homes in their area and to develop proposals for consideration by LCGs and the Board.

The process of applying the criteria to each home

During the summer/early autumn 2014 Trusts commenced the application of the evaluation criteria to the relevant homes.  Throughout this process the Regional Planning Group provided advice and guidance as required to ensure regional consistency in terms of the approach to this task.

The key steps included:

  • Following completion of the application of the criteria, and within the context of the local needs assessment, Trusts developed proposals for change.
  • These proposals were then reviewed and approved by individual Trusts’ Senior Management Teams and Trust Boards.
  • Trusts’ proposals for change were submitted to Local Commissioning Groups (LCGs) and the Health and Social Care Board (HSCB) for challenge and review.
  • LCGs provided a view on Trusts’ proposals to the HSCB.
  • HSCB undertook consistency checking and quality assurance review of Trusts’ application of criteria and challenged Trusts’ analysis where it was deemed necessary.
  • HSCB Senior Management Team and Board considered, challenged and approved Trusts’ proposals.

A copy of the Board’s report, Trusts’ proposals and LCGs assessments can be viewed or downloaded from the Health and Social Care Board’s website  at:

You can also view our Frequently Asked Questions.

Trusts’ Proposals:-

Name of Home Location Trust Proposals for consultation
Cloughreagh House Bessbrook To be retained. Admissions to reopen post consultation.
Crozier House Banbridge To be retained. Admissions to reopen post consultation.
Skeagh House Dromore To remain closed.
Roxborough House Moy Proposal for closure. Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.
Slieve Roe Kilkeel Proposal for closure.  Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.
Northfield Donaghadee Proposal for closure.Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.
Pine Lodge Belfast Proposal for closure.Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.
Chestnut Grove Belfast Proposal for closure.Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.
Clonmore Rathcoole To be retained.Admissions to reopen post consultation.
Joymount Carrickfergus To be retained.Admissions to reopen post consultation.
Lisgarel Larne To be retained.Admissions to reopen post consultation.
Pinewood Ballymena Future role to be changed to provide a community rehabilitation unit for the Antrim/Ballymena area.Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.
Roddens Ballymoney Proposal for closure.Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.
Rosedale Antrim To be retained.Admissions to reopen post consultation.
Westlands Cookstown Proposal for closure as a statutory residential home for older people.Cessation of permanent admissions will be maintained.Proposed reutilisation of the Westlands site as a community hub.
Thackeray Place Limavady To be retained. Admissions to continue.
William Street Cityside Proposal for closure.Cessation of admission to be introduced.
Rectory Field Waterside Proposal for closure.Cessation of admissions to be introduced.
Greenfield Strabane To be retained.  Admissions to continue.

Next Steps and Timeline

  • Trusts will be required to consult locally on any proposed change to the use of a facility.  This means that local consultation will be required in the circumstances of a proposal for an alternative use of the facility or for closure. (Stage Two of the consultation process)
  • Where a Trust proposes to close a care home, it will be expected to comply with the best practice guide – The Reconfiguration of Statutory Residential Homes (Nov 2013).

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