Grey County is moving forward with plans to combine beds from Grey Gables and Rockwood Terrace into a brand new long term care home in Durham. Amalgamating the two facilities into a 166-bed home ensures quality care can be provided efficiently and effectively for another 30 years.
“Council’s action ensures our aging baby boomers will have access to the care they need in southern Grey when the time comes. Combining the two homes solidifies our ability to provide high-quality care for another 30 years, and creates an opportunity to attract other much needed services for seniors to Markdale” said Grey County Warden Alan Barfoot. “It wasn’t an easy decision to make, but I believe it was the right decision.”
Council also passed a recommendation to pursue hiring a management company to help with redevelopment plans and to oversee the day-to-day operations of all County-owned homes. Management companies have more resources to support homes providing care in an increasingly complex environment.
The decision passed 54-33 in a recorded vote by council on May 25, 2017. County staff will now create a request for proposal to find a qualified management company.
With this motion, staff will also create a detailed project plan to support the sale of the Grey Gables. Grey County will look to attract other services for seniors such as assisted living and memory care.
“Seniors need many different services, not just long term care. Grey Gables is in great condition to be repurposed as an assisted living and memory care home. These services are needed in southern Grey County and it makes sense for a provider to operate here,” said Lynne Johnson.
Long term care across Ontario has changed greatly over the past decade. Residents have greater needs than ever before. Many have serious physical or cognitive challenges and require more care. Operating a 166-bed home will improve Grey County’s ability to meet the needs of residents.
“Long-term care homes are evolving into chronic care hospitals. Operating a 166-bed home will improve our ability to provide the quality of care our residents need and deserve. The new home will have an efficient design that will maximize resident access to staff,” said Johnson.
The estimated cost of building a new 166-bed home in Durham is $38 million. The building will be funded through reserve savings, proceeds from the sale of Grey Gables and Ministry funding of $635,000 per year for 25 years. Annual tax levy contributions will drop by just over $1 million in the first year.
Construction of the new home is years away. All plans must be approved by the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care and a new site for the building needs to be found. Once plans are approved, Grey County will issue a public request for proposal to find an architect and later a public tender will be issued to find a builder.
“We have a direction now but we still have a long road ahead of us,” said Johnson. “Until we are ready to open our doors, Grey Gables and Rockwood Terrace will continue to operate as they are. As we get closer to the move-in date we will work with our residents and their families to ensure a smooth and comfortable transition into the new home.”
Rockwood Terrace, Grey County’s 100-bed long term care home in Durham, requires redevelopment by 2025 to maintain its licence from the Ministry. In 2016, Grey County began a long term care review to look for opportunities to address service delivery challenges and to meet the future long term care needs of southern Grey County.
Consultants reports showed that amalgamating the two smaller homes, Rockwood Terrace and Grey Gables, would create long-term efficiencies. It would also help Grey County address challenges in staffing multiple homes.
Grey County worked closely with the Southwest LHIN to better understand the needs of our region. After considering demographic information and learning about the intentions of other operators in and around southern Grey County, staff recommended Durham as the best location for a 166-bed home. On May 25, 2017, Grey County Council supported the recommendation during a committee of the whole meeting.
For more information contact Rob Hatten, Communications Manager, at email@example.com or 519-372-0219 ext. 1235.