Failing care home in Portsmouth could be taken over by county council after private firm pulls out

Harry Sotnick House
Harry Sotnick House
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A FAILING city care home could be taken over by the county council.

Portsmouth City Council’s health and social care board agreed to start talks with Hampshire County Council about Harry Sotnick House.

The home in Cranleigh Avenue, Buckland, was put in special measures by health watchdog the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after inspectors found a number of problems.

The home was run by private company Care UK on behalf of the city council at the time of the inspection.

But, as previously reported, the council has decided to terminate Care UK’s contract and is looking for a new provider.

At Wednesday’s health and social care meeting, members agreed for the council to start negotiations with Hampshire County Council to run the residential nursing home.

The city council said that the county council could run Harry Sotnick House for the next 18 months to two years, and said the plan was based on the experience that the county council has in running and managing care homes.

It runs 10 homes of which eight are rated good by the CQC. Another reason is because while Portsmouth City Council operates residential care homes, it doesn’t operate residential care homes with nursing and it doesn’t have experience of homes in special measures.

The meeting, chaired by cabinet member for adult social care Councillor Luke Stubbs, heard the 57 residents at Harry Sotnick House and their relatives were keen to stay at the home.

Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson, leader of the Liberal Democrat party in Portsmouth, said it was disappointing Care UK could not run the care home to the standards required by the CQC.

‘These plans with the county council are a sensible way forward,’ he added.

‘Money was invested so we could build this care home so it is good to bring in another provider to keep it running.’

Cllr Stubbs approved to start negotiations with the backing of the board.

He said: ‘This is nobody’s first preference but we have come up with this particular solution. It is very much appreciated that we have been able to have a dialogue and come to a solution.’