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Monday 11 November 2019

State paid nearly €1m to nursing home hit by scandal

Eilish O'Regan Health Correspondent

THE owners of a scandal-hit nursing home got nearly €1m in state payments since 2009, the Irish Independent has learned.

The payment of €912,975 was made to subsidise the weekly fees of up to €750 for each resident at the Owengriff nursing home in Oughterard, Co Galway.

Elderly people who are means-tested and accepted into the Fair Deal scheme have part or all of their weekly nursing-home fees paid by the State.

Around 20 residents in the home are now being cared for by the HSE, after poor standards of care were found by inspectors.

The home is owned by Riverside Nursing Home Ltd, which has three directors from the one family. They are Theresa O'Toole, of Waterfield, Oughterard, and her daughters Kimberley and Melanie.

Inspections

The closure of Owengriff brings to 11 the number of closure orders against nursing home obtained by the Health Information and Quality Authority following inspections in the past two years.

An analysis of more than 1,500 inspections carried out by the specialist health consultants, the Wolfe Group, showed that each home received on average five inspections before facing closure .

The main problems identified were breaches in the welfare and protection of residents and poor medication practices.

Other weaknesses were breaches of regulations covering care planning and assessment of the residents.

Irish Independent

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