'We can't forcibly restrain her' - care home owner hits back at safety criticisms over resident 'repeatedly' leaving site
PUBLISHED: 17:37 03 June 2019 | UPDATED: 17:37 03 June 2019
The manager of a north Norfolk care home placed into special measures after "repeatedly" allowing a resident to wander off the site has said she is "shocked and saddened" by the move.
Kingsgate Residential Home, in Sheringham, was criticised for its safety and leadership after a visit by Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspectors earlier this year.
And in the report, published on Saturday, June 1, after the unannounced visit on Tuesday, March 26, inspectors stated: "We identified incidents of a person repeatedly leaving the service and being found and returned by members of the public or staff coming on shift who passed the person while in their car."
But owner Ginny Taylor said the North Street home did not have a locked door policy, and could not "forcibly restrain" their elderly residents.
Mrs Taylor, 53, added: "I can't see that she was unsafe.
"We have an open door policy and there are residents who sometimes walk outside.
"Usually she just walks down the road and comes back.
"We were aware she had gone out for about half an hour.
"To us it wasn't a big issue but it became a big issue when the CQC heard."
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The home owner and nurse defended the home's policy, and said: "We try to keep residents safe but they are free to leave as much as everybody else.
"We're not a dementia home and we can't forcibly restrain her."
The service was also found to require improvements in care, responsiveness, and effectiveness.
Inspectors found the home's 25 residents were "not always having their needs met by sufficient numbers of staff" and the service was "not consistently following advice" from health professionals.
The report found safety fears including choking risks, a lack of care plans, uncovered pipes and unsecured furniture, as well as incomplete risk assessments for residents' medication.
But Mrs Taylor, who took over the home from her mother 16 years ago, vowed her staff would turn the situation around.
She added: "We're just shocked and saddened by it. We've never been in this situation before.
"My team are absolutely brilliant and the residents we have and their relatives are lovely - we are all one big happy family.
"Hopefully we'll measure up to what they want."
The home will be re-inspected by the CQC in six months time.