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Gangrenous foot, agonising infections at centre of new Tinonee Gardens nursing home allegations #australia #australia_news #ABC_News #Just_In


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June 08, 2018 06:20:43

More allegations have been levelled at a Newcastle nursing home a month after the Federal Government revealed four Australian homes had closed this past year due to failings in their care.

Last month, the ABC revealed Tinonee Gardens The Multicultural Village at Waratah, Newcastle, apologised to the family of Val Simpson amid claims she had languished in urine and faeces with a mouth covered in wart-like filth.

The aged care regulator publishes its audit results online, and Tinonee was one of 17 nursing homes sanctioned across the state over the past year.

It has since been re-accredited, which has concerned several other families who have spoken to the ABC.

One set of allegations has been raised by the family of Tom Coyne, who before dementia, a stroke and prostate cancer was a straight-talking Irishman.

His daughter Kathleen Levinson said he worked in the Hunter’s power stations before becoming a coal mine manager.

“He worked his way up at the local power stations, at Vales Point, at the Liddell power station,” she said.

“He’s a tough man, a self-made man “

Warning: Some of the images that follow may be confronting.

But Ms Levinson said her father’s tough exterior was eroded during his three years at Tinonee Gardens.

“Dad does not cry. He cries from his stroke cry, but this was screaming, crying and screaming,” his daughter said.

His family said Mr Coyle was screaming because a nurse mishandled his catheter, causing chronic infection.

Tinonee Gardens’ then-executive officer Sue Fardy apologised in an email obtained by the ABC.

“I apologise that we had inadequate procedures in place to transition from one registered nurse to another resulting in the failure to change Thomas’ catheter within the required time frame,” Ms Fardy said.

“I trust that Thomas’ facility-acquired urinary tract infection responds promptly to the prescribed antibiotic.

“Again, please accept my apologies for the deficit in Thomas’ care.”

Swollen, infected toe left man writhing

Kathleen Levinson said there was also a deficit in her father’s podiatry care.

“That big toe was just so pussy and massive,” she said.

“He just started crying and I said ‘dad, what’s the matter?’ and he said ‘I am trying to cut my slipper to get my toe free’.”

Mr Coyle’s grandson Christopher Levinson said his grandfather deserved more.

“They let him down, they let us down a lot,” Mr Levinson said.

“He deserved so much better than that.

“It is not that Tinonee is necessarily bad, it is just that they failed my grandfather and failed other people.

“Just because they were really good with your relatives doesn’t mean they were really good with ours.”

Tinonee Gardens was sanctioned for failings in its care in August last year, with its sanction lifted in February.

The Australian Aged Care Quality Agency said it had failed 10 of 44 industry benchmarks.

Concerned families attended a fiery public meeting in the weeks following the release of the review and Kathleen Levinson said her father has since moved elsewhere.

“At this public meeting they were so angry. It was beyond anger. I (was inspired) to get him out of there.”

Daughter horrified by mother’s decaying foot, carcinoma

A woman who wants to be known has ‘Tracey’ has also raised concerns about Tinonee.

Her mother is still there due to fears that moving her would cause too much confusion.

Her daughter has expressed several concerns, starting with what was a small lesion on her mother’s back in November last year.

She said it grew and grew unbeknownst to her.

“I got a phone call saying it was a quite serious cancer, which was quite aggressive, on her back,” she said.

“It then alarmed me the fact that this thing had grown.

“Also, there is a very big risk of infection which could ultimately lead to sepsis which could become fatal.”

Tracey said her mother also had a blackened, decaying heel with a gangrenous crater.

She told the ABC it became problematic while the facility was in lockdown due to an outbreak of gastro or influenza.

“One Sunday evening I had a phone call from a very concerned registered nurse,” she said.

“Of course I was horrified.

“She was very concerned about my mother’s wellbeing as her heel was severely necrotic.”

Tracey also alleged her mother was once found in a urine-sodden bed.

“One time I visited my mother at an unexpected time and on an unexpected day. She was laying on a stripped bed, soaked in urine. It was quite clear that she had been laying there for hours and hours and hours.”

Families say system is broken

Several other families have applauded Tinonee Gardens for their care, claiming there have only been isolated incidents.

Both some families say the aged care system needs a massive overhaul.

“I want people to have a look at aged care,” Tracey said.

“I want there to be a public outcry because one day we are all going to be in care. I’d like to think that we all get the care that we deserve and that is just not happening.”

Kathleen Levinson agrees.

“I believe the quality agency should do a lot more unannounced visits,” she said.

“They knew they were coming.”

Quality agency makes unannounced visit

The Australian Aged Care Quality Agency said it conducted an unannounced monitoring visit to Tinonee Gardens on May 23 after concerns were raised with it.

“The process of assessment is ongoing,” a spokeswoman said.

“Due process allows for the service to respond to the findings of the visit before a decision is made regarding the home’s compliance with the Accreditation Standards.”

“In the event there is a finding of non-compliance, the Quality Agency said it can take a number of steps including placing the home on a timetable for improvement and/or conducting a comprehensive review audit of the home against the 44 expected outcomes of the Accreditation Standards.”

It said it would continue to monitor the performance of the home, including through unannounced visits.

Tinonee Gardens said it welcomed the audit process, but could not comment on individual cases.

Anyone who is concerned about the care being provided in an aged care service is urged to contact the Aged Care Complaints Commissioner. The Commissioner can not comment on individual cases.

Topics:

aged-care,

diseases-and-disorders,

health,

newcastle-2300



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