Shortage of carers in South Ayrshire

Girvan Community Hospital.
Girvan Community Hospital.

Five patients in Girvan are unable to leave hospital due to a shortage of carers in the Carrick area.

The patients are waiting either for a place in a care home or a suitable home care package.

However care home providers in Carrick are having difficulty filling roles for various reasons including rurality.

Kenny Leinster, Head of Community Health and Care Services, South Ayrshire Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “We work closely with a range of partners to provide the best care possible for individuals across South Ayrshire.

“Providing care at home in rural areas presents challenges for all providers, with staff often needing to have transport to cover larger areas. While Carrick is already well served by existing staff, we and our partners have a number of vacancies that we’re actively looking to fill for both driving and non-driving roles, and would urge anyone with an interest to get in touch for more details. Any patient who requires to be in hospital would remain there until they are medically able to be discharged. Planning for a patient’s discharge starts as soon as a patient is admitted into our hospital. We work with our partners to ensure that discharge arrangements are in place for patients as soon as possible once they are well enough to be discharged.

“Currently, we have five patients within Girvan Community Hospital who are waiting for a care home placement or an at-home care package.”

BRICC Ballantrae manager Lynne McIlwraith said: “All care agencies are having problems with recruitment. The biggest problem is rurality.

“Here in Ballantrae we may have to travel 13 miles to visit a client in say, Barrhill, so the carer would need a car and be able to drive. We also don’t have a very big pool of people to pick from, in Ballantrae we don’t have a high percentage of younger people looking for work. But I don’t think we can do any more, we offer competitive rates of pay and perks include pension and healthcare schemes, but we just don’t have people coming forward.”