Sinn Féin MLA Phil Flanagan has said he is saddened at news that Shannagh Nursing Home in Belleek is to close with the loss of around 40 jobs.
Mr Flanagan said:
"This is devastating news for the local community, for the residents and their families as well as those that will lose their jobs.
"Unfortunately this closure is as a direct result of partitionist and protectionist policies introduced, which do not allow patients from the south to be placed in nursing homes in the north, which is a ludicrous position along the border. I made representations to the Health Ministers in Dublin and Belfast as well as CAWT to amend this policy to allow patients from the south to be admitted. My colleagues Councillor John Feely and Michelle Gildernew MP also explored alternatives with the Western Trust to keep Shannagh open. Unfortunately, the will for cross border working in some areas just isn't there, which is a crying shame.
"I know very many people and their families who have personally benefited from the excellent standard of care in Shannagh over the last 20 years and they are extremely grateful to the team at Shannagh. The people of this area think very highly of the place and it will be sorely missed. Many memories were made in Shannagh and they will not be forgotten.
"Shannagh Nursing Home gave local people a chance to live close to their home, their families and friends instead of having to go to Enniskillen, which is not as accessible for visiting.
"Finding alternative accommodation for the residents is now a challenge for all involved and this must be done in a way that meets the needs of the residents and their families.
"I want to place on record my thanks and appreciation for the efforts of all those who have worked in the home since it opened to care for the elderly people of this area and to make their lives better. From speaking to the families and friends of residents over the years, I can attest that they certainly did that."