Troubling restraint use at shut aged home

Earle Haven residents restrained and drugged before sudden closure

Aged Care Royal Commission
Residents of the Gold Coast's Earle Haven Retirement Village were restrained and drugged.

Residents of the Gold Coast's Earle Haven Retirement Village were restrained and drugged.

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Half the residents were being physically restrained and 71 per cent were receiving psychotropic medication royal commission told.

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ELDERLY residents were being physically restrained and given psychotropic drugs in "troubling" numbers shortly before a Queensland retirement home suddenly closed.

Half of the residents at the Earle Haven Retirement Village were being physically restrained and 71 per cent were receiving psychotropic medication, the aged care royal commission was told on Thursday.

The figures were revealed in the report of aged care quality commission staff who visited the Gold Coast facility on June 25, shortly before its July 11 closure.

Counsel assisting the royal commission Paul Bolster said the psychotropic medication numbers was one thing but the figure about physical restraint was even more troubling.

The Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission's Ann Wunsch agreed it was a very troubling number.

Mr Bolster said a 50 per cent figure for physical restraint was totally unacceptable.

Ms Wunsch replied: "It's an unacceptable level."

She said the 71 per cent figure for the use of psychotropic medication was at the very high end.

"I was concerned about the use of restraint in that service," she said.

The shutdown and emergency evacuation of 69 vulnerable residents was sparked by a dispute between the approved provider People Care and subcontractor HelpStreet, which managed the residential care facilities at Earle Haven.

Australian Associated Press

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