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A Highland councillor who lost his dad in the Covid-19 outbreak at Home Farm Care Home on Skye is to begin legal proceedings

By Louise Glen

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A Highland councillor, who lost his father at a Skye care home in May, is uniting with other bereaved families to address the failings at his father's nursing home.

Councillor John Gordon is calling for others across Scotland to share their concerns about how other care homes have responded to the crisis.

Mr Gordon's father, John Angus Gordon (83), was among 10 people who died at Home Farm Care Home in Portree due to a covid outbreak among staff and residents.

John Angus Gordon who has passed away from Covid-19.
John Angus Gordon who has passed away from Covid-19.

Councillor Gordon said: “The situation at Home Farm was appalling but I do not think it is an isolated case.

"I believe that many other care homes in Scotland have also failed to safeguard vulnerable residents like my father at a time when they most needed protection.

“I hope that other families in similar circumstances will contact me so that lessons can be learned before more lives are lost.”

Ten residents died at Home Farm Care Home during the outbreak. 30 people living in the home tested positive for Covid-19 and 29 staff tested positive. The operator HC-One is now in the process of selling the home to NHS Highland.

John Gordon
John Gordon

Peter Watson of PBW Law, who is acting on behalf of the families, said: "The families have already suffered bereavement in the most tragic circumstances.

"Conpounding their loss is the fear that their loves ones could have been protected had the proper procedures been in place."

A spokesman for the law firm continued: "The Care Inspectorate’s report on May 18 detailed a litany of catastrophic failings at the home following a series of unannounced inspections in April and May. Staff reported that residents had been left lying in urine and faeces and the families had raised concerns that there were few infection control measures in place.

"The Care Inspectorate team found that residents had lost weight during the lockdown and that medication was not administered safely or in a timely manner. Staffing levels were inadequate on numerous occasions and some staff were working for 60 hours a week.

"Staff did not consistently use PPE in an effective manner in order to protect themselves and others from the risk of infection. The overall cleanliness of the home gave rise to serious concerns and infection control measures were lacking."

The Care Inspectorate subsequently applied for cancellation of the care service's registration under the Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010, however this application was subsequently withdrawn.

PBW Law is representing Councillor John Gordon, his sister Mrs Mary Maccaskill and Ms Norma Morrison, who lost her mother Margaret Morrison.

Read related stories: Families of victims of the Covid-19 outbreak on Skye appoint lawyers

Update: Families of Skye care home Covid-19 victims call for Fatal Accident Inquiry

Read more news.

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