A former Perthshire senior care assistant responsible for a catalogue of “failings” at a Strathearn care home has been handed a three-year warning.
Hazel Brunton, 56, of Crieff, was found guilty of a series of failures at independent care home Richmond House, Crieff, following a fitness to practise hearing of the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) in Dundee.
The panel heard she told staff to push residents in their wheelchairs without ensuring the footplates were in place, failed to ensure a medicated adhesive patch was removed from a resident before applying a new one, and withheld medication from another resident.
The members of the SSSC also found her guilty of leaving medication unattended which resulted in a resident taking it, and initialling a resident’s medical sheet to state she had given them medication when she had not actually seen the resident taking the drugs.
Other incidents, dating from March 2015 to August 2016, showed Mrs Brunton altered instructions for several residents regarding handing out drugs such as paracetamol and temazepam.
The panel also found her guilty of failing to complete dementia training, after she claimed she didn’t have the time to do so.
The panel accepted there was no intention on Mrs Brunton’s part to cause harm to residents but they stressed there were “serious failings” on her part.
“It had been stated your actions had been ‘process driven’ with a view to trying to run shifts efficiently,” the SSSC report said.
“However, senior staff were expected to lead by example. You had told staff not to follow instructions – there was a harm to residents.
“You had undermined your manager causing tensions in the team and impacting on residents’ care.
“Your manager had tried to improve your practice but you failed to engage with training or policies necessary for your role. These were serious failings.
“There was a failure to provide an acceptable level of care.”
The report continued: “You had admitted some failings in medical matters but had denied others, or offered no comment. Even those you accepted showed a lack of insight.
“You had an underlying attitudinal problem and your behaviours were deeply ingrained. There was a real concern that there was a risk that your behaviour would be repeated.”
The SSSC decided Mrs Brunton’s fitness to practice is impaired and agreed to impose a warning order, with conditions, on her for three years.
They also revoked a temporary suspension order on her.
The warning order means that if Mrs Brunton finds employment in a similar role she will have to disclose the SSSC proceedings and the findings of the panel to her employer.
Mrs Brunton, who the panel stated has not worked in care since these incidents, was not available for comment when approached by The Courier.
Richmond House did not wish to comment.