Monday, April 09, 2012

Nurse at Southern Cross home did not call doctor and Joyce Wordingham died, court hears

SYSTEMATIC failures at a Tyneside nursing home saw a pensioner in desperate need of medical attention left to die. Dementia sufferer Joyce Wordingham had become so ill it should have been obvious to staff at her nursing home that she needed to see a doctor. However, Daphne Joseph was the only nurse looking after 29 residents at St Michael’s View, in South Shields, and she had not been trained properly amid a “culture of neglect”. So, instead of calling an ambulance, Joseph simply sponged Mrs Wordingham and made a note she looked frail and ill. The next morning, just two weeks after moving into the home, she was found dead in her bed after Joseph handed over to the day shift. Joseph pleaded guilty to neglecting a person who lacked mental capacity but a judge suspended her prison sentence after being told of the conditions she was working in at the Southern Cross-owned home. Mr Justice Coulson, at Newcastle Crown Court, said: “Your neglect was part of an endemic culture of neglect. You had not been trained properly and that failure, which was not your responsibility, was directly relevant to the tragedy that happened.” The judge said the failings included management and leadership

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