A decision on the future of local aged care facilities, Bimbimbie Retirement Village, Merimbula, Mariner Park, Tura Beach and Nullica Lodge, Eden could be a step closer after 30 companies have shown interest in the Anglicare portfolio of aged care facilities in the ACT and South Coast.
CEO of Anglicare, ACT and South and West NSW, Jeremy Halcrow told the News Weekly that 30 companies had made enquiries and that a short list would be drawn up by the end of October.
In June the board of Anglicare in the Diocese of Canberra and Goulburn made a decision to partially divest its aged care portfolio. Five facilities in Canberra and on the NSW South Coast were offered for sale as going concerns: Ginninderra Gardens in Page; Brindabella Gardens in Curtin; Bimbimbie at Merimbula, Mariner Park at Tura Beach and Nullica Lodge, Eden.
The decision was made after an independent review conducted earlier this year highlighted residential aged care providers require a greater number of beds to achieve economies of scale. A notional target of 1000 beds is generally accepted to achieve a break-even portfolio, Anglicare said.
The organisation currently has 394 residential aged care beds spread geographically and said it would have to invest significantly to increase bed numbers to achieve a sustainable aged care portfolio, which was deemed to be beyond the capital resources of the organisation.
Mr Halcrow said: “We have been surprised by the amount of interest but our consultants (Ernst and Young) have told us there is a lot of movement in the market.”
The interested companies have signed expressions of interest and are currently doing due diligence, Mr Halcrow said.
“Some entities are interested in all the aged care facilities, some in the ACT facilities and some in the South Coast facilities.”
Mr Halcrow said that he hoped the news that there were not-for-profit providers interested in the South Coast facilities, would put people’s minds at rest.
The divestment is being conducted by Ernst and Young who will draw up a short list of companies by the end of October to present to the board of Anglicare.
Mr Halcrow said that given that timetable, the board would expect to make a decision before Christmas.
Anglicare has sought to reassure residents by stating that no facilities would be closing and that Anglicare would continue to provide care and services to all residents in every facility during the process of divestment.