AS much as £250,000 extra could be spent providing intermediate care facilities at the new Albion Mill development in Blackburn.

In June 2016 the council's executive board approved proposals for adult social care to work with Verum Victum and Inclusion Housing, who were developing Albion Mill, a supported housing and extra care facility in Blackburn.

The Albion Mill facility is currently under construction and will provide housing with care and support for adults.

Now changes to the scheme are needed to meet clinical and infection control requirements, as well as for digital upgrades.

And the changes could cost up to £250,000.

Executive member for adult services and prevention, Cllr Mustafa Desai, said: “The Albion Mill facility is currently under construction and will provide housing with care and support for adults.

"The development will also include an intermediate care facility which will comprise of 35 units for Intermediate Care accommodation across two floors of the building.

"The Intermediate Care facility will be developed in partnership and will be jointly funded by the council and the NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

"The Intermediate Care facility service specification has been upgraded to include “step up” provision in addition to “step down” provision. In order to meet the requirements of the intermediate care facility additional works to the original building specification are needed to enable us to comply with Clinical and Infection Control requirements required by the CCG and for digital upgrades.

“The additional works will be funded from the Disabled Facilities Grant scheme included within the pooled budget for Better Care Fund."

Approval has been given for a budget of £250,000 to be set aside for the work, though it is expected to cost less than that.

The building was originally designed for traditional “step down” provision which enables people to be discharged safely and efficiently from hospital into rehabilitation.

This is now extended to include the intermediate care facility which provides for both ‘step down’ and ‘step up’ provision.

Step up provision is care which avoids admissions into hospital or short term care.

The facility will now be able to cater for step up and step down service users aged 18 and over.

The changes will allow for care for people in an acute, but stable condition but not safe to be at home or transfer home from hospital yet and need help to regain independence, as well as those who are at risk of hospital admission and need help to regain independence.

The facility could also be used to provide care for people who are living at home and have increasing difficulty with daily life through illness or disability, and people with outstanding health needs that require 24-hour clinical care but do not need to be in an

acute setting.