Nursing Home Closure

News article published 28 January 2018

Nursing Home Closure

The Ritz Nursing Home in Leura

The Ritz Nursing Home in Leura, a locked facility for 148 high-care residents, is one of the very few nursing homes ever to be closed by the Australian Government.

It closed on 4 January.

An audit found residents often didn’t have enough food and water. Medications weren’t properly monitored and many were forced to wait to be taken to the toilet.

Patients and staff reported being frightened and attacked by aggressive patients, who weren’t managed properly.

The audit report painted a picture of a dirty, smelly, dilapidated home in disarray, with patients who have little say in how they are treated and what they can do.

The Ritz Nursing Home failed 30 of 44 performance markers.

What is so scary about the performance report is that what was found in The Ritz sounds very similar to stories about a multitude of other nursing homes, which continue to operate. This is not to say that these nursing homes are as bad as The Ritz. But it is just as possible that what goes on there is worse than what went on at The Ritz.

Yes, there are 44 performance markers, but whether these performance markers are deemed to have been met or not seems to be entirely up to the discretion of the audit team. For advocates and consumers it is impossible to tell from audit reports how good or bad a nursing home is.

The Ritz Nursing Home was no doubt a hell, but how many other hells are allowed continued operation?

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