For the first time, the running of a government-owned residential care home will be put out to tender, the Department of Social Care has announced.
Ingledene, for adults with learning disabilities, on Lezayre Road in Ramsey, will be put out to tender with other nearby residential care home, Glenroyd, which is already run by a ‘third sector’ provider.
The contract for Glenroyd is set to expire and the new contract will seek an organisation to run both facilities from April next year.
Chief executive officer at the DSC Yvette Mellor said: ‘The staff at Ingledene are being asked about their preferences, if they would like to stay working at Ingeldene in the employment of any company which takes over, or if they would rather transfer within the department instead.
‘Once this is established, it could be that any company who takes over the running of the home might have it written into the agreement that they have to keep any staff who have asked to continue working at Ingledene.’
Asked if this is the first of many such moves, Ms Mellor said: ‘Yes, we are looking at the services we provide and this change made sense.
‘We have been looking at moving away from being a provider towards being a commissioner.
‘By combining the two services of Ingelene and Glenroyd there are potential savings to be made, and any that are made would be reinvested into areas that we are looking to grow, such as respite.’
Asked if any decision had been made about the new contract, Ms Mellor said: ‘We don’t know who will get the contract yet, we still haven’t put it out to tender so there are no details.’
Minister for Social Care Chris Robertshaw MHK said: ‘I am pleased that my department is continuing to improve our services.
‘It is important that we consider more efficient methods of service delivery and the fusion of community homes in Ramsey under one single provider is a logical next step.’
Ingledene is a community home based on Lezayre Road in Ramsey which has been in operation since 1998 and currently supports four adults with learning disabilities.
Support is provided on a round-the-clock basis by a team of four.