Care home fined £80,000 for choking death


Care home provider Craysell Ltd has been fined £80,000 after a resident choked to death on a meatball.

Margaret Humphreys died in August 2014 after being admitted for a respite stay at Marlborough House in Hampshire, the BBC reported.

Health and Safety Executive inspector Andrew Johnson said:  “Had a risk assessment of Mrs Humphreys been carried out, they would have identified the risk that she would have choked if she was fed uncut food.

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“It’s a message to the care sector to risk assess and treat respite residents as they would their permanent residents.”

The 84-year-old required supervision when eating as she was unable to chew properly having previously suffered a stroke.

Mrs Humphreys’ daughter Gayle Gunner said staff had been given clear instructions on a laminated sign about her mother’s needs.

She added: “It is a really difficult decision to leave a relative in respite care, but it’s done in the hope that they will get the best quality of care when the family is in need of respite.

“It is therefore crushing to learn how mum died and we feel the care home betrayed our trust.”

Craysell pleaded guilty to breaching health and safety legislation and apologised to Mrs Humphreys’ family.

The company said: “As soon as this incident occurred, we overhauled our processes and procedures and provided re-training for all staff in order to give assurances to residents and relatives.”

Tags : Crimefine

The author Lee Peart


  1. We were saddened to read of yet another fatal choking attack at a care home…
    There was a major feature in Care Home Professional a short while back which gives the overview of why our ACD ‘Anti-Choking Device’ is so important.
    If you run a care home then this is a ‘must read’ article!

  2. This is very sad and why over 580 care homes across the UK have equipped LifeVac anti choking medical device into their care homes. Already saving 3 lives since June in care homes across the UK.

    LifeVac’s mission as being the only non invasive anti choking device is to save as many lives as possible and stop these sad preventable deaths.

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