Studies in dating bruising in elderly
"Our mum deserved to be treated with dignity and compassion but Orchid View failed to provide her with even a basic level of care." She added: "If this inquest hasn't been the wake-up call the industry desperately needs, I dread to think how bad things could get." The findings came after Mr Hunt called for Britons to take a closer interest in the welfare of elderly parents and grandparents, describing it as a "national shame" that as many as 800,000 people in England are categorised as chronically lonely.
He said he was "particularly worried" about the 400,000 people in care homes.
In a devastating verdict delivered hours after Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt conceded that "something is badly wrong" with the care system, West Sussex coroner Penelope Schofield there had been mismanagement "from the top down" at the Orchid View home run by the defunct provider Southern Cross.
Relatives said the findings meant the Crown Prosecution Service should review a decision not to bring charges against five people who were arrested - some on suspicion of manslaughter by gross negligence - following the death of one resident, 77-year-old Jean Halfpenny, who received an overdose of the blood-thinning drug Warfarin.
In one case, a woman's fractured ankle went undiagnosed for several days while another had a dressing secured with Sellotape.
A pharmacist who inspected the home was physically sick in the car park.
But after a five-week inquest which heard multiple accounts of maltreatment of often immobile elderly people, Ms Schofield said she was satisfied that Mrs Halfpenny had been overdosed and then her medical records destroyed after it became clear she required hospital treatment.
The first of these by Langlois and Gresham studied eighty- nine adults and photographs of bruises of known ages were obtained.