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Gloucestershire Business News

Stormy Period for Four Seasons

As another major national health care company goes into crisis there have been more calls for the government to deal with Britain's 'crumbling' social care system.

Four Seasons Health Care (FSHC), which has around 20,000 workers and around 17,000 residents and patients across the UK, is going through sale and administration. The company is behind Kingswood Care Centre in Wotton-under-Edge which is home to 40 clients requiring residential, nursing and respite care.

Group Medical Director Dr Claire Royston put out a statement reassuring families and employees that nothing will change during the current sale and administration process.

But the news has prompted union representatives to push even harder for the Government to face up to the increasing challenges being faced by the care industry.

GMB, the union for care workers, says the Government must urgently step in to reassure Four Seasons' staff and residents.

GMB, which helped launch an All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) earlier this year to deal with a social care system 'crumbling beneath us', says Four Seasons' troubles show once again lack of funding is putting the future of care in serious danger and the organisation is pushing even harder for the Government to stop delaying their Green Paper in social care.

Rehana Azam, GMB National Secretary, said: "The possible collapse of Four Seasons shows our care system is in crisis, it is crumbling beneath us because the funding isn't there.

"Lack of funding in the care sector is putting the profession - and all of our futures - in serious danger.

"Throughout our lives, we will all come into contact with care - be it our mums and dads needing help, working as a carer or knowing someone who does. Ultimately, we will all need it ourselves.

"But instead of taking action, this Government keeps kicking the Green Paper on social care into the long grass.

"Instead of wasting all their time bickering over Brexit, the Conservatives must pledge to step in and make sure Four Seasons facilities continue to operate and give tens of thousands and workers and residents the reassurance they need."

Meanwhile, Dr Royston, in her statement, said the situation doesn't change anything for residents, their families and colleagues.

She said: "The colleagues who provide care and work in our homes remains the same. Nothing changes in terms of how our care homes are run, or the support provided from our regional and central colleagues."

A spokesman added: "The Group expects to complete the independent sales process by year end. The Group's operation companies are unaffected by the appointment of administrators at the Issuers' levels and all businesses are continuing to trade as normal and maintain continuity of care."

No one from Kingswood Care Centre was available for comment.

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