Edington and The Abbey-reprovisioning

Health and Wellbeing Association and North Berwick Community Council

Notes from Public Meeting with IJB, Reprovisioning of Edington and Abbey Care Home

May 9th 2018, St Andrew Blackadder church

In Attendance: David Small Chief Officer East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership Bruce Dickie Consultant to Reprovisioning Project, Jane Ogden-Smith Engagement and Communications Officer East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership, Deborah Ritchie co-chair North Berwick Coastal Area Partnership Health and Wellbeing Association.

Item Comments
What is extra care housing?

Bruce Dickie


There is a national initiative to shift the balance of care from hospital/care home settings to supporting people to stay in their home. Coupled with a significantly increasing older population, there is a need to look at how care can be provided in East Lothian, and in particular the North Berwick area.


Future model

Extra care housing is described as accommodation units (flats) configured to provide a variety of amenity and care options from according to local demand and need. They could include medical services, 24 hour nursing care was suggested, so catering for a variety of needs.

Building the units will require external funding. The units could be a combination of rented, bought, social housing and also short term NHS beds (most likely for palliative care)

North Berwick will need approximately 60 units

Examples are Varis Court in Forres and Dovecot Court in Peebles


Health and Wellbeing Association response

Deborah Ritchie

The Association response to the consultation on reprovisioning highlighted the following

–         Only one future model for care proposed

–         Consultation and engagement must include local people, particularly older, frail people whose voices may not otherwise be heard.

–         Siting of the new facility must not create further isolation. No silo!

–         Integrating the health centre into the facility, including nursing provision

–         Focus must be on health AND social care, so integrating provision for social needs (hairdresser, playgroup/nursery, cafe etc)

–         Services must include social care activities

–         Existing services must not be lost or reduced.

–         Transition from existing arrangements to new facilities must be sensitive and involve residents in planning

–         Carers. Caring for people at home makes more demands on family and friends. Will there be more support for those who are currently balancing work, care and their other commitments (including their own family)?

–         Carers. There will be a need for more paid carers and high quality care services

–         Reinvestment. If the future model is cheaper, will the savings be reinvested into services? This also includes any moneys released through sale or development of existing sites

–         More detail is required on how owning/renting the units will work with particular regard to other family members and partners. Is there a danger of “house”blocking?


Future model for North Berwick

David Small

Direction of travel

The comments and concerns raised at this meeting will feed into the consultation process. IJB are seeking general agreement that, in recognition of the need to plan for the future now, extra care housing has the potential to provide for the health and social care needs of this community. If this is the case then work can begin on building the business plan for North Berwick. It is at this stage decision will be made on service provision, unit types, sites etc. There will be further opportunity for community input through public engagement and through the Health and Wellbeing Association.

The timescale will be in the region of 2 years.

There was an assurance that no services will be lost.

There was further assurance that neither the Edington nor the Abbey will close until the new facility is operational. NHS ‘beds’ could be ringfenced in extra care housing for palliative care and end of life care for example. They would be funded by the NHS.

NHS ownership of the Edington building was confirmed. In addition, any restrictions placed on the use of a building can be lifted through legal process.


Public forum Many people took the opportunity to speak, share their concerns and above all, praise the existing staff in the Edington and Abbey for their care, professionalism and service excellence. There was considerable concern that this would be lost through reprovisioning.

Other concerns raised included

–         Essential services must not be lost or reduced. These were listed as

1.     End of life care and palliative care.

2.     Respite care

3.     Minor injuries

4.     At least 9 NHS beds – free at point of delivery

5.     Rounded integrated health and social care service that comes from providing a range of care, locally, in one site.

–         Carers. There were many issues raised over the provision of carers. These included

1.     Patients are already facing delayed discharge as care packages are not in place. This is usually caused by a lack of care staff. Where will the care staff come from for this facility? What happens if there is not enough?

2.     Housing. Care staff are unlikely to be able to afford to live in the area. There is a shortage of homes that would be affordable for those on a limited wage (such as care staff). Key worker housing? Travel costs will be a further financial barrier.

3.     Payment. Value care staff. Offer high quality training and pay a wage that reflects their importance

–         Minor injuries service is highly valued and regarded as an essential service for the area. North Berwick is geographically distant from A&E or other minor injury units.

–         Minor injuries service is being evaluated and assessed through a separate process, independent of this consultation. This has caused some alarm as it was felt the service was such a major part of health provision.

–         Community Hospital in Haddington has been provisioned to exclude the beds currently provided by the Edington.

–         Site. Concerns were raised over where the facility will be situated. It was felt that a site on the edge of town would not be suitable, increase isolation. A suggestion was made to use the existing site and some of the Lodge ground although that was not thought possible by David Small and Dr Flynn.

–         Providing 24hour 7 day a week nursing care will require staff. How will this be achieved? Need local nursing hub.

–         Health centre will need to move. It is undecided as yet where it will go to. But should be close to extra care housing.

–         Terminology. Many people expressed their concern and confusion over some of the terms used in the consultation document and in meetings. It would be helpful if more effort could be made to ensure everyone can access and understand the information.



Next steps

Jane Ogden-Smith

The public consultation is ongoing until the end of June.

A further meeting for North Berwick is arranged for 21st May, 6.30-8pm, Hope Rooms. It will be a workshop format to enable people to contribute their ideas on how the future model of care will look and what it will provide.

In addition information is available through a touring exhibition, social media presence, radio and press ads and articles and the ELC consultation hub.


End of meeting Thanks to David Small, Bruce Dickie and Jane Ogden-Smith.

Thanks also to the approximately 300 people of the North Berwick area who came along to the meeting.