Death teaches Brandon nursing home operator lessons

Thetford news from the Bury Free Press
Thetford news from the Bury Free Press
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Important lessons have been learned by a care home operator following an investigation into the death of a 97-year-old woman, an inquest has heard.

Phyllis Mulcahy died suddenly in December 2012 at the Brandon Park Nursing Home.

Police were called in after it was discovered an antibiotic called Trimethroprim had been administered to her, despite a red sticker on her notes saying she was allergic to it.

Last Friday (June 6), an inquest in Bury St Edmunds heard that tests later showed the drug had played no part in the death of Mrs Mulcahy, who was a retired confectioner.

But Suffolk Coroner Dr Peter Dean said an extensive investigation conducted by BUPA, which operates the nursing home, had resulted in important lessons being learned about notes.

The inquest heard that after Mrs Mulcahy began to suffer from laboured breathing and appeared unwell, paramedics were called.

Efforts to revive her continued for 26 minutes after she had stopped breathing, but without success and she was declared dead.

A post-mortem examination was conducted by Home Office pathologist Dr Benjamin Swift, who concluded that death had been due to heart disease and old age.

Police ruled out any suspicious circumstances and said no criminal offences had been identified.

Dr Dean said examination of records, with help from Mrs Mulcahy’s GP, showed no allergy to Trimethroprim and subsequent tests confirmed the drug had played no part in Mrs Mulcahy’s death.

No allergic reaction had taken place.

He recorded a verdict of death by natural causes.