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NZACA Calls for Independent Investigation

Press Release from NZ Aged Care Association

NZACA Calls for Independent Investigation in Resthome’s Care and DHB Actions.

The New Zealand Aged Care Association is very concerned with the allegations of poor care at the Rose A Lea Rest Home in Palmerston North and the reaction of the DHB in closing the home down so swiftly.

“There is no doubt if residents are not well cared for then action must be taken and swiftly. However, before a home is closed DHBs must consider what is in the best interests of all residents, because it’s the residents’ home and it may be better to assist the provider to change certain practices than kick everyone out”, said Martin Taylor CEO of the New Zealand Aged Care Association.

A registered nurse at the home strapped a woman to her bed after the resident needed to be immobilised after an accident where she hurt her knee. The Association said that such immobilisation was clearly wrong, but it did not mean that an entire facility should be shut down.

“While the DHB may believe this was the only outcome, it would have been better to talk with the residents and their families before taking such drastic action. The concern we have is the DHB may have over-reacted and not followed due process”, Mr Martin Taylor, said today.

NZACA is also concerned that the DHB appears to be raising issues with the certification regime, the same regime which allows DHBs to operate.

“There are a lot of unanswered questions and the care of our elderly is too important to let these go. That is why we are calling for an independent investigation into this situation to establish (a) the quality of care delivered in this facility, (b) the differences between audits, (c) whether the DHB and their audit agency followed due process, and (c) whether the decision to close the facility was in the best interests of residents and their families”.

“It is also worth noting on the day Rose A Lea was closed by Mid Central DHB for incorrectly immobilizing a patient, the Auckland DHB admitted to a systemic failure of care which resulted in the unnecessary death of a patient. However, despite this death no sanction to any manager or employee has occurred. Clearly, if this happened in a rest home the outcome would have been completely different” Mr. Taylor said.


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