A BALLARAT aged-care facility is being closely monitored by the Department of Health after claims by family members that residents were fed a party pie and handful of chips for lunch.
Department spokesman Tim Vainoras said the department had investigated three complaints this year in relation to the Home Residential Care supported residential service (SRS) in Kline Street, Canadian.
“Issues raised included medication storage and disposal, staff-related matters, food quality and cleanliness and temperature,” Mr Vainoras said.
“The SRS has taken steps to address these issues with additional staff training, updated record keeping processes, repairs to heating and plumbing and new cleaning staff have been employed.”
Mr Vainoras said the facility was still being “closely monitored”.
“The department will continue to closely monitor this SRS to ensure the wellbeing of residents and that they continue to receive quality care,” he said.
A relative of an SRS resident, who did not want to be named, said the facility failed in its duty of care.
“They provide very poor nutrition,” the relative said. “Three or four times that we know of, the facility provided a party pie and a handful of chips for lunch.”
The facility is managed by Equisent Aged Care, whose chief executive, Hiram Ng, denied the claims, dismissing them as “spurious”.
“Our food in SRC is exceptional,” Mr Ng said. “It is one of the best in the industry. Certainly the Department of Health has had no problems with it.
“We do our best to run a very good business,” he said.
“If we have people who are disgruntled then we try to fix it.
“We haven’t had any prosecution happen or any major action (by the Department of Health).”
On the Equisent website, Home Residential Care is described as “Ballarat’s highest premium-level aged care facility”. However, the family member said the facility was not acceptable.
“I would withdraw my parent from the facility but there was nothing available in Ballarat,” she said.