S'pore elder care home investigating claim that staff forced resident to reuse vomit-soiled mask

The organisation said that the family members involved have been contacted.

Ashley Tan | September 17, 2020, 10:07 PM

Allegations regarding the quality of care at St Luke's ElderCare centre in Singapore have surfaced online.

The complainant is the son of an elderly woman who is a resident of the home.

The man, Royston Tan, took to Facebook to share the experience his elderly mother, a resident at the Hougang branch, allegedly underwent.

St Luke's ElderCare offers a range of services such as day care, day rehab, dementia care, nursing care, home care and wellness.

It has 22 senior care centres islandwide.

Insisted on reusing soiled mask

Tan shared a particular incident where his mother was feeling ill, and vomited after lunch.

Despite the elderly resident's mask being stained and soiled with the remnants of regurgitated food, the staff at the centre, located at Block 126 Hougang Ave 1, allegedly insisted on reusing the mask.

Photo from Royston Tan Wee Pheng / FB

Tan said that his mother "helplessly" told them that the mask was dirty, but the staff responded that "it's ok" and went ahead to reuse the mask.

Tan highlighted that during this Covid-19 pandemic, maintaining good hygiene was even more crucial, and questioned why the staff were not able to provide the elderly woman with a new mask.

He also cited other occasions where the care given to his mother was allegedly inadequate.

This included incidents where his mother had soiled her diaper, but was not cleaned up promptly.

Tan shared that this alleged negligence resulted in his mother developing rashes.

The incidents apparently repeatedly occurred despite "countless feedback".

"I wished that I could have got there earlier to relieve the suffering of my dearest mother. I am so sorry Mum!!" he added.

He ended off his post with the hope that the centre's management could "do something to improve the situation".

You can view his full post here.

Will take action if lapses found

In response to Mothership's queries, St Luke's ElderCare said they were aware of the post circulating on social media.

The organisation is investigating the matter, and have contacted the family members involved.

It added that such treatment of their elderly residents "would not be consistent with our care values".

The statement said:

"We will take action if we find any lapses, and review our processes to see if they can be improved. We remain committed to providing the best care for our elders."

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Top photo from Royston Tan Wee Pheng / FB and Google Maps