December 15th, 2015 by

Council hears grave concerns about care at H.J. McFarland

Joy Vervoort, representative of H.J. McFarland Home presents concerns about resident care to council Tuesday December 15, 2015.  (Photo: Nicole Kleinsteuber / Quinte News)

Joy Vervoort, representative of H.J. McFarland Home Family Council presents concerns about resident care to County council Tuesday December 15, 2015. (Photo: Nicole Kleinsteuber / Quinte News)

Grave concerns about the quality of resident care at H.J. McFarland Home were brought to Prince Edward County council Tuesday night.

Council was presented with a report outlining a recent investigation by the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care at the senior’s residence that resulted in 20 written notifications, three of which were considered significant enough that the Ministry issued four compliance orders.

Among those was the inability of some staff, including senior registered staff, to perform basic care functions such as using patient restraint devices properly.

The report says intense re-training is underway with staff, but that some people working at the home are resisting any change.

A December 8, 2015 compliance deadline was issued for a number of the orders, to which Commissioner of Corporate Services Susan Turnball (who oversees the home’s administration) said have been met. She stated more details will become clear in a January 15 report containing recommendations on how council can move forward.

Joy Vervoort, a member of the H.J. Family Council, was one of several residents who addressed the council Tuesday.

Vervoort pointed to how the report highlights a lack of knowledge and adherence to legislative requirements under the long term care act and policy regulations by the Saint Elizabeth Health Care management team.

Joy Vervoort

Saint Elizabeth was contracted for 18 months at a cost of $600,000 per year to provide interim senior administration after the dismissal of the home’s two senior managers ,Lori Kimmett, director of care and Beth Piper, in 2014, costing the municipality $320,000 more than Kimmett and Piper combined.

“Some residents who have expressed their feelings say the home is going to Hell and that the state of the H.J. McFarland is no longer a home but an institution,” said Vervoort speaking of changes that have taken place since the management changeover.

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