Residential care homes in Scotland are facing a crisis due to rising costs, a leading charity has warned.

Age Scotland is now calling for urgent action to protect vulnerable residents following the announcement of the closure of an East Lothian care home.

Renaissance Care, one of Scotland’s largest private care providers, plans to close its Levenhall Care Home in Musselburgh, with chairman Robert Kilgour saying that the sector is struggling due to rising costs.

Age Scotland is urging providers and commissioners to work together to prevent similar closures and ensure a smooth transition for the residents affected.

The charity has called for a compulsory risk register for care homes, as recommended by the Residential Care Taskforce in March 2015, to anticipate and mitigate similar closures in future.

 Renaissance also operates homes in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Forres, Peterhead and Blairgowrie.

Brian Sloan, Age Scotland’s chief executive, said: “Any closure will have a serious impact on the health of vulnerable residents, and moving them could even put their lives at risk.

“Poorly planned moves are extremely stressful for older people and can be extremely detrimental to their physical and mental health. We hope that Renaissance is working with local authorities and the Scottish Government to protect older people and their families.

“We’re very concerned about the increasing problems facing the sector. This announcement is a warning bell and we’re aware that there are similar problems throughout the country. With Brexit on the horizon, the current issues around recruiting staff are likely to get worse.

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