Home Opening Heralds New Era for the Elderly
By Tristan Corkt.email@example.com
The future of residential homes for old people in the 21st century has become a reality in the West, as a new facility opened in Wiltshire which will become a blueprint for the entire region.
The new Athelstan House building opened in Malmesbury on the primary care campus which has been built where the town’s old community hospital used to be.
And this modern facility, which incorporates a huge new GPs surgery, primary care centre and sheltered homes too, will form the model for towns across Wiltshire and the rest of the region, health bosses said yesterday.
The new pounds20-million care campus doubles the size of the town’s old residential home, and yesterday residents were getting used to their new surroundings.
Council chief John Thomson said he was delighted with the building, which has the feel and facilities of a four-star hotel, including hair salon, deep-pile carpets and 80 en-suite rooms.
The home also has a wide range of health services, including 10 beds paid for by the NHS to replace the town’s hospital.
Most of Wiltshire’s community hospitals have closed in the past two years, but Cllr John Thomson said the tide was turning with a new model of care.
"What I hope is that we can start spreading this across the whole county to all the other sites. We are now working with the PCT and the Order of St John Trust and this is the way forward for us.
"The residents here have all the facilities they need right here, the doctors and health professionals are based here, and it is real luxury really.
"There’s also important things like step-down beds for patients coming out of the acute units, and palliative care rooms too, so people can stay in their community," he added.
The new centre was opened by Peggy Pike, the longest-serving resident of the old Burnham House, the town’s former residential home.
She said: "I think this is a wonderful opportunity for residents. We are all looking forward to the new experience."
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