State’s worst nursing homes exposed
VIOLENCE, malnutrition and neglect have been exposed in Queensland nursing homes, with one in seven failing government inspections in the past year.
Aged-care inspectors have alerted the federal Health Department about a "serious risk'' to residents' safety in four homes, including two run by the Queensland Government.
Fifteen homes have failed audits in the past 12 months, including one that failed to report assaults to police, and another that neglected to "minimise skin tears and bruising'' when restraining elderly residents.
Residents soiled themselves waiting for help to go to the toilet in a short-staffed home, and five homes failed to administer medicine safely.
The Australian Aged Care Quality Agency yesterday published a damning audit of Blue Care's Pioneer Lodge nursing home, which cut its nursing staff from 24 to 16 last year. Blue Care flunked 13 of the required 44 quality standards - including clinical care, medication, pain management and nutrition - during the unannounced spot check on the Bundaberg home last month.
"The home does not ensure all care recipients are as free as possible from pain,'' the report concludes.
"Management is not able to demonstrate care recipients receive adequate nutrition and hydration. Staff practices do not support the safe and correct administration of medication.''
A Blue Care spokesman said yesterday "immediate action'' was being taken to address "process and practice failures'' so it could comply "as swiftly as possible''.
Queensland Nurses and Midwives Union secretary Beth Mohle warned that the failed audits were "the tip of the iceberg''.
"Elderly lives are being put at risk,'' she said.
The Health Department is monitoring four homes after AACQA warned of a "serious risk'' to the safety, health or wellbeing of residents.
They include the Baptist Union's Carinity Fairfield Grange home in Townsville, which AACQA criticised for its poor palliative and clinical care. The department was also alerted to safety risks at the Dr EAF McDonald Nursing Home in Oakey, run by the Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service.
An inspection last August revealed some staff "do not demonstrate appropriate skills'' and "medications are not managed safely or correctly'', but the home passed a follow-up audit in December.
The Federal Government froze funding to Cooinda House, a high-care Queensland Health nursing home in Kippa-Ring, after identifying "an immediate and severe risk'' to patients last July, but the sanctions were lifted when it passed inspection in December.
Forrest Lake Lodge is under federal Health Department scrutiny after staff told inspectors they did not have the time or resources to do their jobs properly.
The Anglicare Meilene Home in Bundaberg failed 15 standards, including clinical care, nutrition, pain and medication management.
AACQA criticised Ozcare Villa Vincent at Mundingburra because "reportable assaults are not actioned in accordance with regulatory requirements'', but said the problem had been fixed following the audit.
UNHEALTHY CONCERNS: Federal report card
Blue Care Pioneer Aged Care Facility, Bundaberg
Failed 13 standards
"This home does not ensure all care recipients are as free as possible from pain.''
Anglicare SQ Meilene Home for the Aged, Bundaberg
Failed 15 standards
...including clinical care, nutrition and pain, medication and continence management (now partially rectified).
Carinity Fairfield Grange, Idalia
Failed 4 standards
... for clinical and palliative care, medication management and continuous improvement.
"Medications are not consistently managed safely and correctly.''
Dr E A F McDonald Nursing Home, Oakey
Failed 9 standards (now rectified)
"Care directives are not consistently followed. Medications are not managed safety or correctly.''
Cooinda House, Kippa-Ring
Failed 16 standards
"Medications are not being administered as prescribed"
Ozcare Villa Vincent, Mundingburra
Failed 3 standards
"Reportable assaults are not actioned in accordance with regulatory requirements."
Forest Lake Lodge, Forest Lake
Failed 6 standards
"Communal, clinical, private, staffing and outdoor dining areas are unclean, cluttered and poorly maintained."
TriCare Mt Gravatt
Failed 4 standards (now rectified)
"Care recipients are not receiving clinical care in accordance with their care plans."
* source: Australian Aged Care Quality Agency