Controversial cost-cutting measures for health and social care have been branded “life-altering blows” for Renfrewshire’s most vulnerable at Holyrood.

Neil Bibby MSP raised concerns about the planned closure of Montrose Care Home in Paisley and the future of head injury support as he opened a members’ debate at the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday.

The Labour politician urged the Scottish Government, which he accused of underfunding Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP), to act as campaigners watched on from the gallery.

He said: “These cuts are not merely financial adjustments, they are life-altering blows to the most vulnerable members of our community.”

Bibby expressed relief that a previous proposal to merge Mirin and Milldale day centres for adults with learning disabilities was ultimately rejected by the integration joint board (IJB), the decision-making body for the HSCP.

However, he said that was “where the welcome news ends,” before continuing: “Montrose Care Home is set to close its doors, despite 3,000 people signing a petition against its closure.

“Montrose is an excellent public sector care home in Paisley and it has been a highly valued sanctuary for the residents who have come to depend on it.”

He turned to the issue of Quarriers Renfrewshire Head Injury Service, which closed on Friday after its contract ended.

It is due to be replaced by a new community-led model of support.

Bibby, who represents the West Scotland region, continued: “That closure took place last week but, despite the new funding offer, families have been left in the dark about when the new service will be up and running, if it will be able to meet the complex needs of their loved ones and what they should do while there remains a gap in provision.”

He finished his speech by saying: “Health and social care services are not luxuries, they are fundamental.

“These cuts are ill thought out and cruel. They may balance budgets in the short-term, but they will cost us dearly – much more – in the long run.”

Social care minister Maree Todd MSP said she would encourage partners in Renfrewshire to “work together to find solutions” that both tackle financial pressures and put the needs of people at the centre.

She added: “On the specific services, I absolutely understand the distress that any planned closure will have on families and their loved ones.

“This is a really difficult time for them. I understand that the proposal to merge Mirin and Milldale was rejected by the IJB at the end of April, but that Montrose Care Home is due to close and that the contract with the head injury service ended on June 7.

“Again, while I reiterate that these are decisions for the IJB, I have received assurances that staff of Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnership have acted in accordance with due process.

“I am told that they have communicated and consulted with the people who use these services, the residents of care homes and their families and loved ones and that they have engaged with people who work in these services.

“While the HSCP has a duty to set a balanced budget, no one wants to see the closure of good-quality care services.

“My officials are actively seeking assurances that alternative arrangements are put in place to support the people of Renfrewshire and that the residents of Montrose house are fully supported during this period.”