Council leaders say 'lessons have been learned after care home death of former Chesterfield midwife'

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Council leaders say lessons have been learned after Derbyshire County Council was fined £500,000 following the death of an elderly Chesterfield resident died in its care.

Chesterfield Magistrates’ Court was told today, Monday, December 9, that former midwife Audrey Allen died following a fall at the Grange Care Home in Eckington in March 2016.

The court heard that it had been her 14th fall in the three months she had been there and staff failed to contact the emergency services and found her unconscious in the early hours of the following morning.

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And when they did dial 999 they failed to report that she had complained of pain in her ribs. It later transpired she had multiple fractures, had torn her lung and died of a haemorrhage some weeks later.

Audrey AllenAudrey Allen
Audrey Allen

Speaking after the ruling, Derbyshire County Council Leader Councillor Barry Lewis said: “We would like to offer our sincere condolences to Miss Allen’s family and apologise wholeheartedly for the failings that caused her death.

“In this case, our actions fell below the high standards that we expect of ourselves and we are truly sorry for what happened.

“The safety and wellbeing of our residents is our number one priority and we have worked extremely hard to address the issues involved in this tragic case.

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“We have implemented a number of changes to do our best to ensure this can’t happen again.

These include: Reviewing and revising th council’s falls policy; establishing a Quality and Improvement Board to oversee the delivery of a quality improvement plan; increasing staffing in the service; implementing changes to the pre-admission assessments, and compulsory falls prevention training for staff.

He added: “Three years on we continue to build on the progress we’ve made and a recent independent inspection of the home found evidence of improvements in the recording of falls and the admission process.

“We continue to work to improve our processes to ensure that we meet the high standards that people rightly expect of us and that residents are safe in our care.”