The hotel is being used as a social care base for people who can’t go directly back to their own homes when they are medically fit to leave hospital, and are waiting for a social care package to be put in place.
It will become home to 31 patients and 13 care staff, in partnership with Dorset County Council (DCC) and Abi Live-In Care services. The move offers more capacity to the health and care system across the local authority area, according to the hotel company, and adds to DCC’s ability to respond to the current situation, keeping hospital beds available to support people with coronavirus.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is helping to get it set up as quickly as possible.
“We are proud to be able to help our local NHS hospitals through the crisis by easing the bed burden on them so they can save more lives,” says Rembrandt hotel’s general manager Massimo Menin.
A second Best Western hotel, the Grange at Oborne, will open on Easter Monday (13 April) taking 12 patients and six care staff. “It allows us to reopen, to bring back some staff such as chefs and waitresses and crucially to help ease the burden on the NHS,” says Jon Fletcher, the hotel’s owner and general manager.
“It’s all hands on deck to get ready for this, to help the NHS and to help the country.”
Best Western says it is also in talks to work with local authorities in Wales and Scotland to open up more of its hotels to providing social care.
“These are unprecedented times and so as a hotel group we are taking unprecedented steps to support the NHS,” says Andrew Denton, head of hotel services at Best Western Great Britain.
“The examples in Dorset are proof this can be done on a national scale and so I am keen to speak to all local authority chief executives who would like to help ease the bed burden on their hospitals about how we can roll this out to support them. We have 230 hotels across the country ready and willing to reopen their doors to help be part of the solution and we can start those conversations today.”
Best Western Great Britain was the first hotel group to offer support to the NHS during the Coronavirus crisis, publicly offering the use of 16,000 rooms over three weeks ago.