Cornwall

Clinton House care home closes amid serious safety fears

Clinton House, St Austell
Image caption The care home's owner said the "best option" was to close Clinton House because of the "significant challenges" it faced

A private care home has closed amid serious concerns for residents' safety.

Clinton House Nursing Home in St Austell, Cornwall, which is run by the Morleigh Group, cares for 30 "vulnerable" adults.

Extra qualified nursing staff were put in place "to safeguard the health, wellbeing and dignity" of residents when fears were raised in October.

Cornwall Council said the "unusual and serious" decision to move residents had been taken due to safeguarding issues.

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Morleigh, which runs six homes in Cornwall, has confirmed three others are being investigated.

In a letter to relatives, owner Tricia Juleff said the home faced significant challenges and she had therefore decided "the best option" was to close it.

She added a new chief executive had been appointed to work with the authorities to support the transition of residents from Clinton House.

Christine Stewart, whose 85-year-old mother Sylvia lives at the home, said she knew it was under investigation but was shocked at how quickly the authorities had moved.

Ms Stewart, who first raised concerns about the home in 2013, said it was a "heartbreaking" situation and while she "supported and applauded" the authorities' action, she was "appalled" residents had been allowed to suffer.

"I am saddened, but not surprised, that the problems have been allowed to get serious enough to force the complete closure of the home.

"Now they have the added disruption of moving and I imagine it will be extremely difficult for most of them to cope."

An action group involving the council, NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group, Devon and Cornwall Police, NHS England and the Care Quality Commission (CQC), was set up after concerns were raised by a relative on 26 October.

The police force said no arrests had been made, while the CQC said the findings of its recent inspections of four Morleigh premises would be reported "in due course".

Others being investigated include St Theresa's Nursing Home in Callington, Elmsleigh Nursing Home in Par and Collamere in Lostwithiel.

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