Damning report on Nazareth House unit

The ‘Journal’ can today reveal the damning findings of an inspection carried out in a Derry care home which recently told some of its elderly residents they have just weeks to find new accommodation.

Inspectors from the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) identified a number of “serious concerns” relating to the quality of management and care at St. Oliver’s Unit of Nazareth House Residential Care Home on Bishop Street.

They inspected it on November 29 and December 1.

The inspectors said the home manager and its ‘registered person’ had a lack of understanding of how to supervise staff, who were supervised in an “informal and ad hoc” way. The Western Trust hadn’t been properly informed about a staff member who had a recorded incident of misconduct.

A relative of one resident had raised a number of concerns during a formal meeting led by the Trust, but there was no indication of any investigation. Another relative told inspectors about tablets seen in some residents’ chairs and on the floor of the lounge area.

The report also voiced concern at the presence of “two volunteers” in the home during day one of their inspection. No records were available of either the process relating to their recruitment or of any criminal record checks.

A relative of a resident at the St Oliver’s Unit described the report’s findings as “very alarming”.

“It would appear from the RQIA report that the core problem at the home relates to management and the failure to comply with regulations. In this day and age, this is a deeply worrying revelation.”

Last night, the management of Nazareth House said it was “very proud” of the standard of care its residents had received over many years and said it constantly received “very positive feedback”.

A spokesperson added: “We will continue to work closely with the Trust and the RQIA to ensure that we comply with all of the rules and regulations.”

RQIA, meanwhile, says it is continuing to monitor the situation in the St Oliver’s Unit to “ensure the safety and well-being of all residents”. The Western Health Trust says it is working closely with the management of Nazareth House and RQIA to respond to the issues identified in the report.

See page 14 for full story.