UPDATE: Nursing home will close, residents need to move
MACKAY Hospital and Health Service Chief Executive Clare Douglas said it was "too early to say" what role, if any, they would play in re-homing residents of Hillside Haven nursing home after it was announced it was closing.
"The nursing home is funded by the Federal Government and is privately run, and is not part of our Health Service," Ms Douglas said.
"However, Mackay HHS has spoken with the Commonwealth Department of Health about finding a solution for these residents.
"These discussions are on-going and it is too early to say what role, if any, Mackay HHS will play in accommodating the residents. At the moment there are no vacancies for aged care residents in the Collinsville Multipurpose Health Service."
COLLINSVILLE residents have rallied against the closure of Hillside Haven by gathering outside of the facility this morning.
More than 100 people met to support nine elderly residents being forced to move, after the decision was made to close D&R Community Services Hillside Haven Aged Care this week.
One staff member said she had concerns the nine residents were far too "fragile" to be relocated.
D&R Community Services, representatives of Queensland Health and Ernst & Young met with residents and Hillside staff on Tuesday and said some of the nine residents could have to move as far as Cairns, Townsville or Brisbane.
That's because other facilities nearby don't have the capacity.
Residents, and their families, have been told they need to decide quickly.
Hillside Haven activities officer Vicki May also said about 30% of the residents have dementia and others had disability and mobility problems.
"They run the risk of their health declining at the drop of a hat if they are moved. That's how fragile they all are.
"Could you imagine taking them out of the social structure most of them have only ever known and grown up with, and putting them in a different environment they don't know. They need familiarity."
Ms May said the closure of the Collinsville-based aged care facility was a minor "symptom" of a much larger issue around Australia.
"(This) highlights that there is a lack of beds in Queensland."
Further rallies in protest of the closure are expected.
Member for Burdekin Dale Last said the community needs the facility.
"I have been fighting to save Hillside Haven for several months since becoming aware that D&R had gone into liquidation and the facility was in danger of closing," Member for Burdekin Dale Last said.
"Late last year I successfully lobbied the Federal Government for an injection of funds which has allowed the facility to remain open.
"I have spoken to the neighbouring aged care facilities at Murroona Gardens and Cunningham Villas to gauge their interest in purchasing this facility and I will be fighting alongside community residents in my endeavour to save this aged care facility."
Mr Last is holding urgent discussions with the Minister for Health, Cameron Dick in State Parliament.
"I will continue to knock on doors until we get the support we need from the Government and/or a new owner willing to take on Hillside Haven which is an integral part of the Collinsville community," he said.
ELDERLY residents of Hillside Haven Nursing Home will be forced to find accommodation as the facility is set to close.
The facility's parent company hit financial trouble last year.
The facility has up to 12 residents.
Ernst and Young says no closure date has been set and it's working with residents to find out where they would like to go, the ABC has reported.