Nearly 1 in 5 care homes close

21 Nov 2023
Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP

Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today urged the Scottish Government to scrap their plans for centralising social care and invest in staff and services instead after new figures reveal that there has been a 19% drop in the number of care homes for adults over the last decade.  


Public Health Scotland’s Care Home Census for Adults in Scotland, published today, reveals that between 31st March 2013 and 31st March 2023, there was a 19% drop in the number of care homes for adults. The number of registered places has fallen by 5% and the number of residents cared for by the voluntary or not for profit sector has fallen by 33%.


Earlier this morning, the Chief Executive of Scottish Care, Dr Donald Macaskill, told BBC Radio Scotland that there are care homes, particularly in more rural and remote areas, which are, “having to close at a rate that we have never experienced before.” He claimed that the Scottish Government, “simply isn’t caring about social care.”


Mr Cole-Hamilton said:


“The crisis in social care isn’t going away.  


“Those who know the sector best understand that as more homes shut their doors, more people struggle to access care close to home.


“The government are bereft of solutions. Instead, SNP ministers are charging ahead with an ill-fated power grab that will utterly fail to address key problems. Their plans should be scrapped, not salvaged.  


“Rather than wasting billions of pounds on a futile and centralising bureaucracy, Scottish Liberal Democrats want to see that money spent on delivering care services close to home, driving up the quality of care and rewarding staff with better pay, conditions and career progression.”  




Notes to editors:


You can find the full Care Home Census here  


Speaking to BBC Radio’s Good Morning Scotland programme, Dr Donald Macaskill, Chief Executive of Scottish Care, said:  


“What we are finding, increasingly, is, particularly rural and remote and small care homes, and charitable run care homes, in particular, are having to close at a rate that we have never experienced before…


“We need to start valuing our frontline staff and we need to start caring about care, and this administration, to be quite frank, Gary, simply isn’t caring about social care.”  

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