Archive for June, 2016

Care Home Operators Fined for Death of Resident

Posted on: June 3rd, 2016 by Editor

BUPA, a healthcare company that also runs residential care homes, has been issued a £400,000 fine for failings that lead to the death of a resident.

Josephine Millard, a ninety-one year-old resident of Penrith’s Beacon Edge Care Home, was found dead on the floor of her room on the 24th September 2013. It was determined that her death was caused by a fall from her bed, leading to a Health and Safety Executives investigation. The HSE uncovered many failings in Josephine’s care – notably, a pressure sensor that would have alerted staff at the home to Josephine’s fall had been deactivated. This was despite clear policies at the facility concerning bedrail safety.

Additionally, the report revealed that staff at the care home were not adequately trained in bedrail use and safety, and no regular checks were conducted concerning the bedrails. The HSE determined that, across the residential facility, there was a general lack of “care and support for people with dementia type illnesses” .

BUPA Care Homes (CFC Homes) Ltd were then prosecuted by the HSE contravening Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and Regulation 9 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998. The company, at a hearing in the Carlisle Magistrates’ Court earlier this year, admitted their guilt to all charges.

Last month, the case proceeded to the Carlisle Crown Court for sentencing. The negligent healthcare company  was ordered to pay a £400,000 fine for their failings, as well as told to pay  £15,206 in prosecution costs.

HSE Inspector Carol Forster commented after the hearing that “The need for adequate risk assessment and management of third party bedrails has been recognised in the healthcare sector for a number of years. In this case there was a lack of appropriate assessment of the residents’ changing needs and review of the control measures in place to protect her. The measures that were in place were not used correctly in that the sensor pad which would have alerted staff to the resident’s being out of bed was not switched on”.

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