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Rest home criticised for patient pain care

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 12/09/2016

Rest home criticised for patient pain care © Corbis Rest home criticised for patient pain care A Hawke's Bay rest home has been criticised for failing to provide services with reasonable care and skill in their pain relief treatment of a cancer patient.

The 77-year-old woman had a skin condition, mycosis fungoides, which is a type of lymphoma, or cancer affecting the lymphatic system.

She also had lung cancer and needed hospital-level rest home care, and moved into Gracelands Lifestyle Care and Village in Hastings.

The woman's skin condition began to deteriorate and she reported increasing pain, Deputy Health and Disability Commissioner Rose Wall says in a report..

The woman had a pain care plan but it was not updated in response to her changing condition, Ms Walls says.

A fax was sent to the woman's general practitioner about the increased pain a few days later and a nurse from the GP's medical centre responded with an amended pain management plan.

The hourly pain assessment tool was filled in by staff between 3pm and 8pm, but was not filled in hourly after that.

The next day, the GP reviewed the woman, who was then admitted to hospital and given palliative care, but she died a few days later.

Ms Wall says the rest home failed to update the woman's GP promptly regarding the change in the woman's condition and her increased pain.

It also failed to update the woman's pain care plan and document the effectiveness of pain relief appropriately.

She recommended that the rest home arrange for further staff training regarding pain management and pain assessment, and apologise to the family.

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