Woman refused food and medicine after being admitted to home, inquest hears

PUBLISHED: 14:53 23 June 2020 | UPDATED: 14:53 23 June 2020

Mrs Tomlin was admitted to Bilney Hall Care Home, near Dereham, after the death of her husband  Picture: Ian Burt

Mrs Tomlin was admitted to Bilney Hall Care Home, near Dereham, after the death of her husband Picture: Ian Burt


A 79-year-old woman whose health deteriorated after she was admitted to a care home died from natural causes, a coroner has concluded.

Retired civil servant Veronica Tomlin, from Fakenham, was admitted to Bilney Hall, near Dereham, after her husband died in April.

An inquest at Norfolk Coroner’s Court on Tuesday heard her stepdaughter Karen Hunt had concerns over her care during her stay.

Mrs Tomlin - who was also known as Harrison - was admitted to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital on September 3, where passed away on September 12.

In a statement read out to the court, Mrs Hunt said her mother was able to converse well and rarely exhibited signs of dementia.

She said she prepared staff a four-page note outlining what she liked to read, eat and watch on TV, before she was admitted to the home on April 24.

But she claimed carers did not follow her instructions and when she visited her mother she appeared dirty, unkempt and was deteriorating.

Carers at the home said in statements that Mrs Tomlin would frequently refuse food, drink and medication.

Before being admitted to the QEH, the court was told she became disorientated and frail after losing 2.8kg in weight.

During the hearing, it emerged there had been a lack of record keeping at the home and patients’ food and fluid charts had since been made more detailed.

Mrs Tomlin suffered from Parkinson’s disease and dementia. On admission to hospital, she was also suffering from delirium and low blood pressure.

A decision was made to start end of life care on September 5 and she died seven days later with her daughter at her bedside.

A post mortem report concluded she died from bronchopneumonia, with contributory factors including Parkinson’s and dementia.

Mrs Lake said she was satisfied Mrs Tomlin had become increasingly frail after the death of her husband and on entering the care home began refusing food.

She concluded Mrs Tomlin died of natural causes.

If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Eastern Daily Press. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Latest from the Eastern Daily Press