GSD highlight lack of communication for elderly in temporary facilities
The GSD has accused the Government of a serious lack of communication after receiving complaints from concerned relatives of elderly residents of Cochrane Ward who were temporarily moved to Mount Alvernia during the Covid-19 public health emergency.
The Opposition said that relatives have not been consulted beyond the initial decanting of Cochrane Ward, adding that the Government has little intention of authorising the return of elderly residents back to Cochrane Ward despite providing assurances from the outset that they will be permitted to return.
The residents were moved to a makeshift residential facility in the dining hall and activity room, the GSD said.
“It is understood that whilst very few have been allowed to return the situation is causing real distress to the majority of elderly residents who remain,” the GSD said.
“Whilst the elderly residents and their families fully supported the temporary move to ensure the health of elderly relatives in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is clear that there has been a serious lack of communication as to when and how the Government will comply with the assurances given to families to move elderly residents back to the Cochrane Ward.”
“The GSD understand that many of the elderly residents affected are deeply distressed by this.”
“The GSD recognise that the move from Cochrane Ward to Mount Alvernia was a destabilising change of environment but was one which was necessary.”
“The elderly residents agreed to move on the basis that the measure was temporary and on the strict assurances that the elderly residents would be able to return to Cochrane Ward which has been their home for a number of years.”
Shadow Minister for Health and Care, Elliott Phillips, added that Cochrane Ward delivered real continuity of care to a number of elderly citizens and good access to their families.
“The elderly, many of whom are above the age of 90, understood the public health emergency in the spirit of the evacuation generation to which they belong, agreed to relocate temporarily to the adapted dining hall or activity room at Mount Alvernia during the height of the pandemic,” he said.
“Since then they have received inconsistent information and a lack of assurance as to when and how they can return to Cochrane Ward where they had been for many years, felt comfortable and was their natural environment.”
“There are fears that a decision has already be made to keep the elderly affected at Mount Alvernia.”
“The vast majority of the elderly residents in question are very frail and are deeply upset that they have not received further assurances.”
“We ask that the Government provide a full statement on when, in keeping with its previous promises to elderly residents and their families, it intends to reintroduce the elderly safely back to Cochrane Ward. Our elderly deserve that at the very least.”