Costa House transfers to dedicated aged care specialist

Costa House in Lara will transfer to Respect Group Limited (Respect), with genU selling its only residential aged care service to the dedicated provider.

genU announced the sale to residents, families, and the Lara community this week.

The sale follows a genU Executive and Board decision to narrow and deepen our strategic growth focus within our core business of disability, community aged care, training, and employment services. Expansion of our single residential aged care service is not part of this national growth strategy.

The decision to transfer Costa House acknowledges that its future best sits with a specialist organisation rather than as a standalone service within genU. It follows the recent sale of our only childcare service, Pipsqueaks, as we focus on genU’s investments within the Lara community.

genU CEO Clare Amies said the Board and Executive made the strategic decision to focus on growing genU’s core businesses nationally, and ensuring they remained sustainable.

“The transfer means Costa House residents and families, as well as the wider Lara community, gain the benefits of an aged care provider who can deliver a greater level of expertise and knowledge of this vitally important sector,” Clare said.

“Our expertise and knowledge lie in our core businesses of disability, community aged care, training, and employment services. That’s why we are investing in the Lara community to grow the services that we are best at.”

genU recently announced a major redevelopment of St Laurence Park, which will increase the number of homes within the retirement village to approximately 230. The project also includes a dedicated Health Hub providing allied health services to the Lara community as well as village residents. The staged development is expected to be completed within eight years.

Like genU, the new owner of Costa House is a not-for-profit organisation. Respect has offered services to older Australians since 1922 and brings deep experience within the sector.

Respect Managing Director Jason Binder said his organisation is committed to redeveloping the facility.

“Respect looks forward to welcoming residents, families, and staff into an organisation that has a strong reputation for compassion and significant experience in delivering quality care to older people,” Jason said.

“Being part of a large organisation with great capacity to invest in systems, staffing and facilities will mean strong aged care services for Lara and its surrounding regions.

“We are committed to redeveloping the facility once we better understand how it operates and assess the future opportunities.”

He said Respect would work closely with genU to provide timely support and information to residents, families, and staff and ensure a smooth transition to handover on 8 January 2024.

Respect will continue to operate Costa House as a residential aged care home and all existing residents can continue living there. All existing staff will also transfer to Respect.

Clare Amies said genU informed residents, families, and staff of the transfer as soon as possible once a suitably qualified and respected operator was secured for Costa House.

“In seeking an operator, genU looked for a specialist provider that would not only bring sector expertise, but that also shares our community focus and commitment to high-quality services,” she said.

“We believe this transfer – together with our investment in local ageing services at St Laurence Park – will bring positive changes for the entire Lara community.”

She said the decision to sell the facility in no way reflected on the excellence and dedication of the staff at Costa House.

The Eric Hart Allied Health Centre at Costa House will continue to be operated by genU under a lease agreement with the new owner.