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St Basil’s NSW/ACT chief addresses concerns over closure of Kensington aged care home

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The CEO of St Basil’s NSW/ACT, Diana Horvatovic, has responded to an enquiry from The Greek Herald regarding concerns around the imminent closure of their aged care facility at Kensington, previously operated by Castellorizian Aged Care.

St Basil’s NSW/ACT is an organisation created by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia (GOAA) which provides quality care for ageing Australians. Archbishop Makarios of Australia is President of a Board of Directors which includes prominent Greek Australians such as James Jordan (who serves as Chairman), Greg Gav and Theo Penklis.

The Greek Herald first reported on Thursday, March 14 that the decision to close St Basil’s Kensington so soon after the sale of the St Basil’s Annandale property in 2023 for $18 million has left some observers perplexed.

Following the permanent closure of the Annadale aged care home in September 2022, many of the residents were transferred to St Basil’s Kensington. 

For the residents and many of their friends and family, it came as a shock that on 17 January 2024 St Basil’s NSW/ACT announced it had made the “difficult decision” to close its aged care home in Kensington. 

St Basils’ Aged Care management advised that it would be working closely with each resident and their families to relocate to another home of their choice by April 2024.

Since then, friends and relatives of residents have expressed concerns regarding the option to relocate to the St. Basil’s facility in Lakemba. The concern stems from the considerable distance between the existing eastern suburbs location and Lakemba, posing challenges for many relatives and friends who wish to visit their loved ones.

Diana Horvatovic
Diana Horvatovic CEO at St Basil’s NSW/ACT has responded to concerns.

‘Land use to be decided by landlord’:

In response to these concerns, Ms Horvatovic said the decision to close St Basil’s Kensington followed significant consideration by the Board of Directors and the Executive team.

“Our aim, vision and mission are to always provide the best possible care for our residents in a safe and quality living environment. Whilst the clinical care of residents had been maintained, the physical environment had been challenging and the building was no longer fit for purpose. Despite our efforts to renovate, it no longer met the more complex clinical needs of residents,” Ms Horvatovic said.

The CEO added that residents were given three months’ notice of their relocation from St Basil’s Kensington “due to a combination of factors such as operational decisions and regulatory requirements.”

“We have been working closely with relevant Regulatory Bodies to ensure we are meeting compliance requirements and making this process as seamless as possible to minimise any disruptions to our residents’ lives,” she explained.

Ms Horvatovic said St Basil’s NSW/ACT have supported all Kensington residents in finding alternative suitable accommodation.

“Most residents have been relocated to other St Basil’s homes. We currently only have three residents left in Kensington, and all three will be moving to other homes shortly,” she said.

The Greek Herald understands there have been discussions that the Kensington property will be utilised as a training facility for St Basil’s staff or an education facility for the Archdiocese’s Theological College.

When questioned on the use of the Kensington property, Ms Horvatovic said “the land will be used for much needed community purposes as decided by the landlord.”

The property is currently under the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia Consolidated Trust.

READ MORE: Concerns raised over imminent closure of another St Basil’s aged care home in NSW.

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