The CEO of Warrigal admits they have a “very big hill to climb” in order to turn around the troubled recent history of an Albion Park nursing home.
Community-owned, not-for-profit senior living, residential care and community services provider Warrigal will take over ownership of the Ridgeview Aged Care Home at Albion Park from Christadelphian Aged Care.
The home will now be officially known as Warrigal Mount Terry.
There were damning findings contained in a federal government agency report into Ridgeview Aged Care released in August.
The home met just eight of the expected 44 national standards of care after an audit by the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency in June.
Many residents at the Albion Park nursing home claimed that they did not feel safe due to the “intrusive and aggressive” behaviour of other residents, while others suspected staff of stealing their personal items.
Warrigal CEO Mark Sewell said Warrigal will officially become the owners and operators of the home this Friday.
He said the acquisition included all 130 staff transferring to Warrigal.
Mr Sewell said there would be plenty of education for those staff regarding Warrigal’s expectations, and their own internal Quality Care Compliance Team would work with the employees to ensure they met Australian standards.
“We’ve already geared up ready to commence a pretty comprehensive quality accreditation review process,” he said. “That’s all about getting it back to being fully compliant.”
Mr Sewell admitted bringing the home up to standard would be difficult, but was confident they could do so.
“Warrigal has just passed 44 out of 44 at Shell Cove and Warilla, so we are used to doing it,” he said.
“We know it’s a big task, but we believe we’re up for it.”
Mr Sewell said when ownership transfers over this week, the previous revocation of the home’s accreditation as a provider of aged care services will be lifted.
“The revocation stays with the former owners, and we get the place with its aged care license intact,” he said.
Mr Sewell said the unmet accreditation standards remained, but they were no longer sanctioned, and Warrigal would have “a reasonable amount of time to get the home back to its full compliance”.
“We expect that to be about a month of hard work to get the standards returned,” he said.
Christadelphian Homes CEO Ross Peden was “confident that residents, staff, volunteers and families will continue to receive the care, dignity and respect they deserve from the new management team”.
“I would like to thank all the staff and volunteers for their hard work, strength and compassion over the last eight years,” he said.