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Court bid to strike nursing home from the register

A Co Meath nursing home could be struck off the register after a move by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA).

Drogheda District Court has been told that inspectors have serious concerns for the safety and health of residents of the Creevelea Nursing Home, in Laytown.

The Court was told that, when HIQA’s Nuala Rafferty visited, the home was so cold she ordered staff to give residents blankets and hot drinks to keep them warm.

According to the inspector, the communal areas and bedrooms were so cold that residents were nearly at risk of suffering hypothermia.

Ms Rafferty said she had visited Creevelea on many occasions, but concerns were not being addressed.

In response, owner Peter Murphy said he felt he was being intimidated and bullied by HIQA.

Ms Rafferty also told the court that on one occasion, no one could tell her the last time a frail 93-year-old woman had eaten. On another occasion a 66-year-old diabetic man was not being monitored properly.

There was no person in charge for long periods, said Ms Rafferty alleged.

In one inspection, HIQA found that the only fresh food in the kitchen was a bag of potatoes and a turnip.

Counsel for HIQA Ronan Kennedy told the court that there had been various undertakings given at earlier court hearings, but these had not been fully complied with.

There are concerns, he said, over lack of governance, medication, clinical management and, in particular, that there is no person in charge as there should be.

He added: ‘'There is a serious risk to the health and welfare of residents in the home.'’

HSE, the court heard, has put in full-time monitoring staff.

Owner Peter Murphy said he was opposing the HIQA action to remove the nursing home from the register.