An inquest has heard that process and training were ignored at an Essex care home in a well known chain before the death of a resident from Legionnaires’ disease.

The resident was taken to hospital three months after moving into the home and diagnosed with pneumonia. His condition rapidly deteriorated and he died three days later. A post mortem revealed he’d died of Legionnaires’ disease.

The Health and Safety Executive launched an investigation and inspectors found legionella bacteria in the resident’s en-suite bathroom at the care home.

The jury heard how the Care Home Manager had not completed the legionella training because she was busy managing a refurbishment at the home and that the water temperature readings had not been kept up-to-date.

In addition required actions in two sequential risk assessments were ignored, which included the need for the Care Home Manager to complete Legionella management training. However she said she didn’t attend because it was too far away.

It was noted that the Manager was only trained in the hazards of Legionnaires’ disease after the death in the Home, and that the care home has now made a number of improvements. The inquest continues.

If you run a Nursing or Care Home, it is imperative that your Responsible Person is trained in legionella management and that you maintain a robust legionella management programme to remain compliant. If you would like some advise or to book an audit, contact us on 0845 6399 673 or email enquiries@hberm.com.