AN inquest into the death of an 81-year-old woman has heard how accusations were made of ‘wilful neglect’ against a care home - including how the dementia sufferer had mould growing out of her ears.
The health of Pamela Ratsey, who lived in Portsmouth her whole life, nose-dived when she developed pressure sores after going into Haven Care Home in Havant Road, Drayton.
Portsmouth Coroner’s Court heard that the popular charity supporter died on March 4 last year after the family moved Ms Ratsey to the Mary Rose Manor care home in Copnor Road after concerns over her care at Haven.
The family made a complaint against Haven after Ms Ratsey looked increasingly ‘dishevelled’ and on one occasion in October 2017 was said to be found ‘soaked in urine’ and had ‘mould growing out of her ears’.
Setting out the hearing, deputy coroner Lincoln Brookes, said: ‘Pam had nearly recovered from her sores by the end of 2017 but then had new sores in early 2018.
‘The family were unhappy about the care given to Pam and arranged for her to be moved to Mary Rose.’
He added: ‘During the move the manager of Mary Rose felt Pam needed palliative care before she died a month later.’
The hearing heard how police considered an investigation before deciding not to pursue it due to lack of evidence.
Care and Quality Commission and Social Services also decided there was not enough evidence to prove wilful neglect.
Pam was one of five children. She was born in Cosham and worked in a greengrocers there after leaving school, and for the Co-op where she met her husband Bob.
She gave up work to look after Bob, who had myasthenia gravis, and cared for him for 13 years.
Pam was one of the founder members of Portsmouth Lapidary Society and enjoyed arts and crafts. She also loved animals and nature and supported charities and a food bank.
The hearing is expected to last four days.