Scottish care home has service suspended

Muirhead Care Home has had an interim suspension order taken out against it after inspectors found ‘vulnerable’ residents were being ‘tied to chairs with belts’ at the property.

The Aberdeen Sheriff Court ruled the 35-bed care home, which is run by Lawson Muirhead Home Ltd near Alford, Aberdeenshire, cannot continue operating beyond 31 August after ‘highly distressing conditions’ at the property were found by the Care Inspectorate.

The inspectorate’s chief executive Karen Reid (pictured) said residents were not being given enough food, there were too few staff and some were not administered ‘essential’ medication.

Reid said: ‘We have made referrals to nursing regulators and the police, and are working closely with Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership to support residents to move to other care homes where they will be cared for safely and with compassion.

‘Most care in Scotland is good or better, but we will not hesitate to address unsatisfactory and weak care wherever we see it.’

The latest inspection report of the property is yet to be published but the last time it was inspected was in November when it received a Good rating for three inspection categories and was deemed a ‘well-managed service’ with ‘good standards of care’. However, it received an Inadequate for staffing.

Brian Sloan, Age Scotland chief executive, said: ‘The unacceptable conditions residents at this care home have been subjected to is appalling. I can imagine just how angry the residents and their families must feel.

‘We know that social care in Scotland is under considerable stress, with major workforce recruitment and retention problems causing considerable problems, and while there is a lot of excellent care available it is vital that no older person in Scotland is ever put at risk due to poor care standards such as in this instance.’

The care home declined to comment.