Tributes have been paid to a “much-loved” Carnoustie nurse and grandmother who has passed away after contracting coronavirus.
Dementia nurse Karen Hutton, 58, died at home in the Angus town last week after testing positive for Covid-19.
She worked in the Lochleven Care Home in Broughty Ferry, where a total of 12 people have now died from the virus since the start of the pandemic.
Karen’s only daughter Lauren gave birth to a granddaughter on April 24 – only four days before the nurse and carer’s death.
Andrew Chalmers-Gall, Lochleven manager, paid tribute to the “much-loved friend and colleague.”
He said: “Karen was a tenacious advocate for her residents and she always put their needs first.”
He said she remained in contact with her loved ones until shortly before her death.
“She was in touch with her friends on social media and was extremely excited about the birth of her granddaughter last week.
“She’ll be missed terribly by everyone at Lochleven,” he added.
Care Inspectorate officials have been notified and have been in contact with the home and the local health and social care partnership.
Staff and residents have held a memorial service in tribute to all those who have died, including music from a piper and releasing balloons into the air.
Seven of the 12 people to die at the home, including Karen, had tested positive for the virus. The other five had suspected links to the disease.
Karen, a former community mental health link nurse, had taken early retirement from NHS Tayside, but returned to work in the Broughty Ferry home’s dementia care unit in April last year.
She was a registered mental health nurse and completed her Bachelor of Nursing degree in 2006.
Rhonda Ormshaw, Thistle Healthcare director, said: “Everyone at Thistle Healthcare is devastated by the loss of our colleague Karen.
“Like all of our staff she was wholeheartedly committed to the residents in her care, and even before she joined the team she was very well-known and respected by our staff and residents.
“We know her family will feel her loss particularly acutely, and our thoughts are with them at this very sad time.”
Managers at the home had previously hit out at the lack of testing for care home staff, but a spokesman said “quicker and easier access to testing” had allowed the home to bring “a lot of staff” back to work.
A total of 31 members of the team working at the home have now been tested for the virus, with eight Covid-19-related absences at present.
A Care Inspectorate spokesman said the body was aware of the “tragic deaths”.
He said: “Our thoughts are with the loved ones of those affected as well as the residents, staff and wider community of the home.
“We have been notified of the circumstances and we are in contact with the care service and the local health and social care partnership during this difficult time.
“All of Scotland’s social care sector is working tirelessly under very difficult circumstances to care for people during the pandemic and the Care Inspectorate is doing all it can to support them,” he added.
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