Aged care still top notch

Last updated 12:56 04/05/2012

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Rangitikei Mail

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Letter to the community from Richard Wishnowsky, Assets Committee chairman, of the Marton Edale Home Trust Board.

The Marton Edale Home Trust Board is facing financial difficulties that are causing concern to the Marton and Rangitikei Community. The Board is working through the problem in order to keep the rest home operating.

It is clear to the Board that unless the financial situation can be turned around the rest home will be in danger of closing.

Over the last five years Edale has been having budget deficits which have been met from cash reserves. These cash reserves are now seriously depleted. Quite simply income received from the District Health Board has not been keeping kept pace with costs.

In January of this year the Board commissioned an aged care consultant, Judith Johnson, to undertake a review of Edale's operation. Her report made a number of recommendations that, when implemented, would enable Edale to operate more efficiently.

Many of these recommendations have already been put in place.

Key to the recovery process is a new staff roster which, when put into effect, will enable Edale to meet its financial commitments and function more efficiently without compromising resident safety. Although the new roster will involve fewer work hours, job losses will be avoided.

However, the new roster remains an area of negotiation with the Service and Food Workers Union.

Staff were advised in early March of the financial crisis and later in the month were advised of the recommendations made in the Johnson Report.

Some staff members expressed a sympathetic understanding of the problems and solutions and indicated their willingness to help Edale through its current difficulties.

In order to maintain Edale as a viable organisation, the Board is investigating a range of options. including bridging finance.

Also, the community organisations who established Edale have been asked to contribute up to $5000 should it they be called upon.

In the meantime the Board assures all the residents at Edale, and their families, that resident care is our prime concern. The on-site manager and the staff are a dedicated team and are committed to providing the best care possible.

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- Manawatu Standard

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