Leader’s concerns over health and wellbeing services closures

Published January 7, 2020 at 9:36

The Leader of the Council has raised her concerns again over the ending of two health and wellbeing services and has offered to work with partners to look for a solution.

The Lancashire Wellbeing Service (LWS), a programme, which supports thousands of people across Lancashire with low-level health and social care issues, has ended while funding for Rossendale’s Home Improvement Agency will cease in March.

Lancashire County Council made the decision to stop both services in summer last year.

Since the decision has been made, Rossendale Council has been engaging with Lancashire County and looking at ways of mitigating the impact of the decisions but given its own financial situation, no solution has yet been found.

Lancashire County Council has also confirmed it is stopping maintenance agreement for stair-lifts, external step lifts, rise and fall baths and wash/dry toilets, which will affect Rossendale Council’s delivery of Disability Facilities Grant applications.

Councillor Alyson Barnes will be raising the issues with Lancashire County Council leader Councillor Geoff Driver and will ask for further discussions about supporting Rossendale’s most vulnerable residents and improving health and wellbeing in the borough.

Councillor Barnes said:

“I fully understand Lancashire County Council is facing serious financial challenges but I have consistently said I believe these decisions will create severe issues for some of Rossendale’s most vulnerable residents.

“Preventative services like these are vital as they help to keep people well, living in the community and out of hospital or residential care for longer.

“The proposals did include efforts to mitigate the impact but we still not had enough detail. I know efforts are being made across Lancashire for the NHS, local authorities and partners to work closer together, shift resources from hospitals into the community and tackle health and care issues as a whole but that programme is still in its infancy.

“Our community has real needs now which we have to address. Rossendale Council has a key role in improving health and wellbeing of our residents and we are committing to work closely with partners to achieve that.

“I have written to Lancashire County Council again to ask how for more details about how we support our most vulnerable residents who rely on these important services. I am willing to work with Geoff and Lancashire County Council officers to come up with solutions.”

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