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Secret film exposes care home failures

Daniel Gordon, BBC Health News

A series of shocking incidents in privately run residential nursing homes in Cornwall have been secretly filmed by the BBC. The Panorama undercover filming shows one nurse saying she will give morphine to a resident “to shut her up” – an event described by an independent expert as “horrifying”. The Morleigh Group, which runs the homes, said it had already identified problems, and that it had always acted quickly to improve care when asked to do so. The footage was recorded by three reporters – one posed as a resident, the other two got jobs there. Some of the most serious incidents occurred at Clinton House, which has 32 residents. It was given a “requires improvement rating” by the Care Quality Commission in May 2016.

Read the rest here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-38019806

Care homes ban relatives who complain

Sangita Myska, BBC Health News

Hundreds of care homes are banning relatives from visiting elderly residents over complaints about quality of care, the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme has learned. A Somerset care home prevented a man from visiting his 93-year-old father after he complained about the poor quality of care of his father who is blind and has cancer. And the children of a woman in a home in Essex say she was evicted after they made a complaint.

Read the rest here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-37825745

Note: Banning relatives who complain of substandard care in long-term care institutions is happening in Ottawa and in other cities across the country. The experience of many Canadian caregivers is very similar to that of the UK caregivers featured in this article. 

“I was in shock”: Police probe Ottawa nursing home after elderly woman found with maggots in wound

Tom Blackwell, The Ottawa Citizen

The Ottawa police elder-abuse unit is investigating a nursing home after staff discovered maggots had infested a resident’s leg wound, landing the woman in hospital and horrifying her family. The discovery suggests flies laid eggs and larvae hatched in the sore before anyone noticed, raising anew questions about the quality of care in Canadian long-term care facilities.

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http://bit.ly/2f0lxFv

Our care of seniors in Canada is the actual outrage

Christie Blatchford, The Ottawa Citizen

As my late uncle Tommy always said, “Old age ain’t for sissies.” He had it relatively easy, that said: he lived in his own apartment, independent but for a wonderful personal support worker who came a few times a week to help him shower, almost until the end, when he was only briefly hospitalized before he died. He endured his share of the small humiliations, of course, but never had to go into a care home, one of those institutions much in the news since Tuesday, when a nurse who worked in two of them was arrested and charged with no fewer than eight counts of first-degree murder. This is Elizabeth (Bethe) Wettlaufer, a 49-year-old in Woodstock, Ont., who police said administered a drug, which they did not identify, to eight men and women, seven of whom lived at the Caressant Care home in Woodstock, the eighth at Meadow Park in nearby London, Ont. The youngest was Arpad Horvath, 75; the oldest was Mary Zurawinski, 96, with most of the others in their 80s or 90s. They died over a seven-year period ending in August 2014. Such prosecutions can be incredibly tricky, as anyone of a certain age who remembers the case of Susan Nelles, a nurse at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, will know. Nelles was accused in the deaths of four babies there, alleged to have given them overdoses of a heart drug called digoxin, but the prosecution fell apart at the preliminary hearing, she was discharged and no one else was ever arrested.

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http://bit.ly/2dO8c1r

Class action accuses one of Canada’s biggest nursing-home companies of neglecting residents

Tom Blackwell, The Ottawa Citizen

A Toronto malpractice lawyer is launching what she calls an unprecedented class-action lawsuit against one of Canada’s biggest nursing-home companies, charging that it routinely neglects or mistreats elderly residents. The multi-million- dollar suit was prompted by the case of Ross Jones, a 68-year- old man who allegedly spent the last days of his life in agony, an infected pressure sore left untreated by a Revera Inc. facility. But the case underscores persistent complaints throughout the country that some long-term care homes deliver substandard care.

Read the rest here:
http://bit.ly/2d9xGWO

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