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Sanction for north care worker who failed to seek medical assistance after vulnerable adults fell

Highland Home Carers, where care worker Hugh Coleman was working.
Highland Home Carers, where care worker Hugh Coleman was working.

A north care worker who failed to seek medical assistance after vulnerable adults in his care fell has been sanctioned by the industry watchdog.

The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) has given Hugh Coleman a 24-month warning and placed a condition on his registration following incidents in Inverness.

Last month at a hearing, it found the care worker’s fitness to practise was impaired while working at Highland Home Carers.

Watchdog hears concerns

The SSSC panel heard concerns had been raised regarding Mr Coleman’s actions in April 2019.

This included an incident on April 21 when he was caring for a man, named in the watchdog’s decision report as AA.

It found evidence that Mr Coleman failed to seek advice from a medical professional after the man fell in his home.

He also didn’t inform AA’s wife of the fall when she was present in the home.

Five days later, Mr Coleman was caring for someone else, named as BB, when he again failed to seek advice from a medical professional after lifting them onto a chair when he discovered him on the floor in his home.

‘Behaviour calls into question reliability and dependability’

The SSSC said: “This behaviour was serious as it calls into question your reliability and dependability and breaches the trust and confidence of people who use services.

“You had been employed in your care worker role for over 10 years prior to the incidents and were aware of the standards expected of you in this role.

“Your actions caused, or were likely to have caused, distress and injury to service users AA and BB.”

Regret for actions

It was acknowledged that Mr Coleman had shown regret for his actions, no previous adverse history with the SSSC and had cooperated fully with investigation.

Within three months of any new employment, Mr Coleman must provide the SSSC with evidence that he has undertaken training covering adult support and protection, effective communication, and dignity and respect towards service users.

Furthermore, he must submit an account to the SSSC displaying his understanding of the impact of his behaviour, and how the SSSC can be assured of his fitness to practise in future.

This will remain attached to his registration during this period, flagging up the incident to any further potential employers.

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