Care home negligence resulted in a resident choking to death, a court has been told.
Beryl Newton, 81, of Thameside home in West Molesey, Surrey, had already been identified as being at risk of choking.
Breaking safety rules
Supervision was required while Mrs Newton ate but during May 2011 she was left alone with food, Elmbridge Council claimed.
Care home operator Anchor Trust was not only fined £130,000, it was also told to pay £60,000 costs.
At an earlier Guildford Crown Court hearing, it pleaded guilty to two counts of breaking safety rules. It also admitted a breach of duty by not taking into consideration the ability of one of its care staff.
The worker involved spoke only limited English and was unwilling or unable to keep key records, the judge heard.
Care home operator admitted negligence
Anchor admitted its negligence and concurred that Mrs Newton’s mistreatment fell below the expected standards.
Anchor Trust’s David Edwards said after the hearing that it was “deeply sorry” about its care home failures that led to Mrs Newton’s “tragic” death. The trust’s compliance director added that the incident was an isolated one and that it had totally cooperated with the investigation. He says lessons from Mrs Newton’s death have been absorbed and acted on.
Last year the home was found to be completely compliant during an inspection by independent regulator the Care Quality Commission, Mr Edwards added.
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