A HEALTH board is striving to find alternative accommodation after a Skye care home suddenly announced to its five residents and 14 staff it is to close this weekend.
A local councillor has voiced his fears the elderly residents may be “shipped off” the island, leaving relatives facing long distance journeys for visits.
The owners of Hilton Care Home in Broadford, Skye, are understood to have informed their staff and residents about the closure earlier this week.
An NHS Highland spokesman said: “NHS Highland has been advised that the operators of Hilton Care Home in Skye intend to close the service at short notice.
“NHS Highland will work closely with the operators to ensure that the five residents currently house within Hilton Care Home will be offered appropriate accommodation and care in alternative services as soon as possible.”
He added: “We are endeavouring to find alternative accommodation for the residents on Skye if possible.”
However local councillor Hamish Fraser said he hoped residents would not be “shipped off” the island, leaving relatives long distances to visit their loved ones.
He added: “The shortage of care home places in Skye and Lochalsh is a major concern.
“It will be difficult for NHS Highland to find suitable beds in this locality.
“We have a long waiting list for places in care homes and this really has to be looked at.”
The owners of Hilton Care Home, Mr and Mrs Mekemeh Pirzadeh, were not available for comment.
But one local,who did not wish to be named, said: “The residents and staff were shocked to learn about their fate just days before the actual closure.”
Mr Fraser said the health board should look at the number of “step down beds” in the area so that those discharged from nursing care could use these beds before rejoining the community.
The Hilton Care Home was taken over by its current owners in 2010, but were taken to an employment tribunal by three former staff earlier this year, before settling payments.