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Nursing home shut amid safety fears

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Health watchdogs have moved to close a private nursing home in Co Offaly

Health watchdogs have moved to close a private nursing home in Co Offaly

Health watchdogs have moved to close a private nursing home in Co Offaly

Health watchdogs have moved to close a private nursing home in Co Offaly over serious concerns about patient safety.

It is alleged more than 100 breaches of regulations were identified during inspections at Upton House Nursing Home in Clara with serious allegations made over the care of two patients.

The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) confirmed an interim order - for 28 days - was granted by a District Court judge in Portlaoise on Thursday night cancelling the registration of the facility on Kilbeggan Road. It is understood inspectors believed there was a risk to life, or a serious risk to the health or welfare, of its 13 residents.

The Health Service Executive (HSE) has taken over the running of the home and is making alternative arrangements for residents, it said.

Liam O'Callaghan, HSE local health manager, said ongoing support will be given to those involved as consultations continue with residents and their families.

"The well-being of the residents is paramount in cases such as this and the HSE will make every effort to ensure the impact on the residents of this private nursing home is minimised," he added.

"In accordance with Section 64 of the Health Act 2007 the HSE was directed to take charge of Upton House Nursing Home from such time and to make alternative arrangements for the residents of Upton House Nursing Home as soon as practicable."

The facility has been inspected several times by HIQA officials. In one report last year, HIQA revealed inspectors raised concerns the nursing home did not meet some national standards, in particular concerning infection control, cleanliness and its physical environment.

They found the standard of cleaning and hygiene was seriously deficient, the building was in poor repair and needed refurbishment while arrangements for healthcare provision were inadequate. Elsewhere a lack of strong governance was recorded in a number of areas and management systems, education of staff and the provision of healthcare did not comply with the regulations and there were no activities for residents.

It also highlighted arrangements for the management and administration of medication had to be reviewed while there was no process for assessing the quality of care and safety of residents on an ongoing basis.

PA