Earle Haven inquiry to hear from advocates

Inquiry into Earle Haven closure to hear from advocates


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Gold Coast Health executive Karlene Willcocks has described the chaos as an aged care home closed.

Gold Coast Health executive Karlene Willcocks has described the chaos as an aged care home closed.

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Aged care advocates are expected to give evidence at an inquir into the shock closure of a high care facility at the Gold Coast retirement home.

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AGED care advocates are expected to give evidence at an inquiry on Thursday into the shock closure of a high care facility at a Gold Coast retirement home.

The hearing into the closure of the Earle Haven aged care facility has heard chaos descended on July 11.

The centre had gone into administration when a payment dispute came to a head between owner, People Care, and HelpStreet, which managed the residential care facilities.

More than a hundred medical staff, including paramedics were called in to to help out when 69 high care residents were effectively left without a home.

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Gold Coast Health executive Karlene Willcocks told the committee on Wednesday she witnessed fridges, mops, buckets and even kitchen equipment being wheeled out of the facility as she responded to the crisis.

Ms Willcocks said medical professionals had to work out how to care for patients using hard copies of medical records, that in many cases had either no identifying photos or dated images of patients.

The computers which contained the facility's care plans were taken from the home about 24 hours before it went into administration.

Queensland Ambulance Service paramedic Cary Strong said he saw rooms being stripped of everything except bed frames.

Mr Strong said despite the chaos, Earle Haven boss Arthur Miller, who was also there, told emergency services they could leave.

He told them they didn't need to be there because an administrator had been appointed to take over, Mr Strong said.

Mr Strong rejected that advice.

Mr Miller was summonsed to appear before the state parliamentary hearing on Wednesday but was unable to appear because he was sick.

Committee chair Aaron Harper said Mr Miller would instead appear next week.

Mr Harper asked both Mr Strong and Ms Willcocks to provide dollar figures on how much the closures cost taxpayers ahead of Mr Miller giving evidence.

The hearing, which is investigating the quality and safety of aged care at Earle Haven, continues on Thursday.

Among a number of witnesses, it is expected to hear from representatives for the Council on the Ageing Queensland, Aged and Disability Advocacy Australia and the Queensland Nurses and Midwives Union.

Australian Associated Press

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