Cobram’s Ottrey Homes has received $2.4million to almost double its capacity.
The aged care facility will expand to 80 beds thanks to the capital grant in the 2016 Aged Care Approvals round.
The upgrade has come at a time when the aged care system in the region is struggling with only 48 beds currently available at Ottrey.
Chief executive Tracey Gemmill said the additional 32 beds and capital grant would provide a much-needed boost for the Cobram community.
‘‘Ottrey Homes currently has a waiting list of 25 potential care recipients, many of whom are required to accept a residential aged care place in other towns including Yarrawonga and Shepparton,’’ Mrs Gemmill said.
‘‘Being forced to accept a place in another town can have significant and often adverse impacts on residents, their carers and families.
‘‘Many of them have contributed in significant ways and should be able to spend their final days within their own community.
‘‘The 32 additional beds will ensure this occurs.’’
The employment pool will also be increased with an estimated additional 40 jobs to be added.
‘‘The increased bed numbers would secure the organisation’s ongoing viability into the future,’’ Mrs Gemmill said.
‘‘We currently employ around 65 staff and the anticipated number of additional staff will be in the nursing, care and ancillary areas.’’
Member for Murray Damian Drum attended Ottrey on yesterday and reviewed the plans.
‘‘It’s critical that all Australians have access to aged care in the communities they have lived and where their loved ones can visit them. That’s why we were delighted when these 32 beds were allocated to Ottrey Homes along with $2.4 million to help with the new buildings,’’ he said.
The announcement came on the eve of scheduled refurbishments to Ottrey Homes, which was built in 1986.
The $3.9million project is expected to commence before the end of the year and includes the extension and refurbishment of all current bedrooms and ensuites, and improvements to communal living spaces.
‘‘A new administrative wing including office space, an education suite and staff amenities is also planned,’’ Mrs Gemmill said.
‘‘A new physiotherapy suite will ensure the recently implemented pain management program and the falls prevention program can continue.
‘‘The refurbishment plans will be revised to incorporate the additional rooms and living spaces.
‘‘This will ensure as minimal disruption to current residents as possible.
‘‘I anticipate the cost of the entire project to be in excess of $7million.’’
- Vivienne Duck.