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Uncertainty around future of Sudbury care facility after healthcare group goes into administration


By Priya Kingsley-Adam


Administrators have been called in by Four Seasons Health Care Group, owners of more than 300 care homes, including Catchpole Court Care Home. County Councillor Jack Owen has requested assurances from Suffolk County Council that it will continue to provide care for dementia patients.....PICTURE: Mecha Morton... (9830225)
Administrators have been called in by Four Seasons Health Care Group, owners of more than 300 care homes, including Catchpole Court Care Home. County Councillor Jack Owen has requested assurances from Suffolk County Council that it will continue to provide care for dementia patients.....PICTURE: Mecha Morton... (9830225)

Assurances have been sought over the future of a care home in Sudbury after the group which owns the facility was put into administration.

Joint administrators have been called in by the holding companies at Four Seasons Health Care, the group which runs Catchpole Court Care Home in Walnut Tree Lane.

Consulting firm Alvarez & Marsal Europe LLP has been appointed to manage proceedings, with new shareholders currently being sought as part of the group’s restructuring plans.

The move has prompted Sudbury town and county councillor Jack Owen to seek clarity over the future of dementia care facilities in the town.

“I am glad to hear that the administrators are not looking for a fire sale of their care homes, but I do want assurances from the county council that there will be provision for dementia care in Sudbury,” he said.

“People with dementia need stability, and so I will do all I can to ensure that provision continues in our town.”

Cllr Owen stated that, while it was understood that the group’s facility in the town was not under any immediate threat, it was paramount that assurances were provided to those working and receiving support at the care home.

“It is vital that clarity is offered to staff and residents as soon as possible,” he said.

Helen Armitage, Labour spokeswoman for health and adult care at the county council, highlighted the importance of ensuring that current facilities would continue to operate while the proceedings were carried out.

“Locally, we need to know that the council will step up to the plate and guarantee that residents in Suffolk care homes, such as Catchpole Court, will continue in their current form,” she said.

“It is clear that Suffolk County Council’s policy of outsourcing care provision is no longer fit for purpose.

“We know the Tories are firm believers in the managed decline of public services, but we warned that cutting corners and repeatedly squeezing the system would lead to breaking point – they didn’t listen.

“The futures of staff and vulnerable people have now been put at risk.”

A spokeswoman for Suffolk County Council stated that the administration process would provide transparency, while relevant proceedings were conducted.

“This is to ensure a fair and open sale of Four Seasons Healthcare,” she said.

“We have been assured by Four Seasons that this will not affect the care and support of care home residents.

“It will be a transfer of ownership and will not prompt a change for residents or employees.

“We have been in close communication with Four Seasons and its key priority remains continuity of quality care.

“We will continue to work with the company to ensure that the ownership of the care homes are transferred smoothly, with minimal impact for residents and their relatives.”

Dr Claire Royston, group medical director of Four Seasons Health Care, which runs more than 250 care homes across the UK, confirmed that the facilities would continue to offer its services during the administration process.

“The news does not change the way we operate or how our homes are run or prompt any change for residents, families, employees and, indeed, suppliers,” she said.

“Our priority remains to deliver consistently good care – it marks the latest stage in the group’s restructuring process and allows us to move ahead with an orderly, independent sales process.”



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