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New care failures exposed in nursing homes

Resource type: News

Irish Independent |

by Eilish O’Regan Trip hazards, inadequate medication records and poor infection control have been discovered in new private nursing home inspections around the country. Among those which breached regulations was Swords Nursing Home in Dublin — formerly known as Leas Cross before it was sold and taken over by Mowlam Healthcare. An HSE inspection report, following an August visit to the home, found that while it had a good standard of management, the care plans for some residents were inadequate. One resident needed to have their fluid and food intake monitored to prevent weight loss but the fluid chart was not completed accurately and there was no food record available. In the case of another resident, the inspectors said there was a stated aim in the written care plan to reduce the risk due to smoking and challenging behaviour. “This resident did not smoke,” said their report. Another resident returned to the home after a stay in hospital and should have had a record of a health re-assessment but this was not available. Another home, Mowlam Health Care, run by the same company — in Ballytivnan, Sligo, had residents with scruffy nightclothes and sheets while the belt applied to a patient in a chair was too tight. “Residents’ chairs were not clean and had particles of food remaining,” said the HSE inspection report for April and May. Adequate precautions against the risk of accidents were not taken and the water temperature in the wash-hand basins was very hot. In the Adare and District Nursing Home — also run by Mowlam Health Care in Limerick city — the inspectors who visited last March found the decor shabby and unkempt. Some toilet seats were old and worn. Washing A separate HSE inspection of Woodlands Nursing Home in Trim Rd, Navan, Co Meath, owned by Susan and Robert Walsh and Fintan O’Connor, found two staff members were seen serving food from the kitchen and then helping residents to the toilet without first changing their clothes or washing their hands. An inspection of the Garda Retirement Home in Raheny, Dublin, found some residents had not had their nursing care re-assessed since admission and a bowel monitoring chart for one of the residents had not been consistently maintained. Tighter regulations governing nursing homes are due to come into effect later this year. But it is expected owners will be given considerable time to meet demands over privacy and space for residents.

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