The manager of a privately-run care home allegedly failed to ensure a seriously ill resident received medical care the night before he died, a tribunal was told yesterday.
Katrina Derbyshire, an inspector, told the Care Standards Tribunal that she had visited the resident, known as MB, at the Alton Centre home in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, for an emergency check on 6 August.
On 7 August, MB became the second resident to die within two months at the home run by Active Care Partnership, part of the Southern Cross Healthcare Group.
The Commission for Social Care Inspection sought an urgent order to cancel the home’s registration, which is being challenged at the tribunal by the company.
Derbyshire, from the CSCI, told the tribunal yesterday she had seen MB, who had a chest infection the day before he died. She claimed she heard a “bubbling noise” in MB’s chest and that he seemed confused. “He thought I was the doctor,” she said.
MB’s father was concerned about his medical condition and said “something is not right”, Derbyshire alleged.
She said the home’s manager told them she had contacted the GP but there was nothing available, so a visit would be arranged for the next day. The manager also said she would contact the out-of-hours doctor after 6pm that day, Derbyshire claimed.
But when Derbyshire returned next day, she learned that MB had died and no doctor had been called.
Derbyshire alleged the manager’s explanation for what had happened became “jumbled” and that she “changed her story”.
She said she believed the manager “failed to secure emergency medical treatment for MB”.
Derbyshire said MB’s care notes for 6 August showed there was an appointment for a doctor’s visit the following day, but information from the surgery conflicted with this. “I don’t know who is telling the truth,” she told the tribunal.
MB died from a wound infection, an ulcer and pneumonia, but no assessment of his wound had been made for three weeks leading up to his death, the tribunal was told.
Derbyshire said no concerns had been raised to her about MB’s ulcer at the time of the inspection on 6 August.
The tribunal was also told that another resident, GC, was sent to hospital three times due to alleged poor management of her diabetes and a sore.
The manager of the home was suspended and an investigation is ongoing.
The tribunal is due to reach a verdict tommorow on whether Active Care should resume management of the home, which has been handed to Northamptonshire council and primary care trust pending the outcome.