A CHESTER man is threatening to sue health and social service officials for ‘manslaughter’ if his 83-year-old mother dies after being forced to leave her care home.
Other families of dementia and Alzheimer sufferers who live at Greencroft nursing home in Aston, Deeside, claim their elderly and confused relatives will be put at risk if the home is forced to close.
The Care and Social Services Inspectorate for Wales (CSSIW) took the rare legal step of applying for the emergency cancellation of the home’s registration at Mold Magistrates Court on Friday.
Lawyer for the home, Neil Grant, warned it would mean immediate closure with ambulances turning up at night to remove elderly residents with their belongings in black bin bags.
But after a morning of legal argument, in a surprise move, CSSIW decided to withdraw its application after the Betsi Cadwaladr health board and Flintshire County Council said they would cancel contracts for the 21 residents in the home allowing its closure over a couple of weeks.
Mr Grant had slammed the highly unusual application by the Wales care inspectorate, local health board and Flintshire county council to close Greencroft as a ‘shambolic mess’.
Lawyer for CSSIW Adrian Perkins had called for the home’s registration to be cancelled immediately for the protection of the 21 residents. But Paul Sandiford, of Curzon Park, Chester, himself a health and safety officer with the Bank of America, said he would want the names of the people he could sue for manslaughter if his mother Patricia, who has dementia, dies as the result of a move.
Last September a resident at Greencroft, 88-year-old Beatrice Morgan, died in Whiston hospital burns unit after treatment for scald injuries she suffered in an accident at the private care home a month earlier.
Mr Sandiford claimed the authorities were using a ‘sad accident’ to show in any future court case that they were taking action in getting the home closed.
Relatives who packed the court all praised the home and the ‘loving care’ provided for their relatives and said new owner Tim Ogenleye and new manager Mary Barker had done a wonderful job in improving the home.
Mr Perkins dismissed claims the application was “shambolic” and “not fair.” He said; “CSSIW want to make it clear that its application has been made in good faith to protect residents. We refute in the strongest terms the criticism by Mr Grant.
Mr Perkins said despite repeated attempts by the authorities to secure improvements, real ‘risks’ remained for the residents and CSSIW had considered the risks to residents of relocating against the risks of remaining in the home, and decided its closure was necessary. Details of the risks were not made public in court.