Coroner satisfied with treatment of Derby fall OAP Grace Normington
A CORONER has ruled he is satisfied with the treatment of an elderly woman who died following a fall at a nursing home.
Dr Robert Hunter recorded an accidental death verdict at an inquest on 101-year-old widow Grace Normington.
The hearing was told the former domestic servant suffered a fall at the Beech Lodge Residential Home, Burton Road, Derby, on September 5, 2010.
She was treated at the Royal Derby Hospital, and discharged, but 13 days later was readmitted with breathing difficulties.
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She died in the hospital on October 20, 2010, after suffering a severe chest infection linked to a brain bleed, a subdural heamatoma.
In his summing-up, Dr Hunter said that at the care home, Mrs Normington, who was becoming increasingly unsteady on her feet, was "appropriately risk-assessed for falls and her care plan was modified appropriately".
He said that at some point she developed the bleed following an unwitnessed fall.
It went undetected despite investigation by a number of health agencies and senior clinicians, "that frequently being the nature of SDH in the elderly".
A scan was carried out which showed the bleed.
Dr Hunter said he was satisfied that there was no reason for carrying out the scan any earlier.
He continued: "Despite appropriate examination and assessment by a number of health care professionals, the SDH remained undetected. This was not foreseeable.
" The evidence of a number of clinicians is that in elderly patients very little force is required to cause a SDH and these can be caused by as little as a glancing blow to the head or even sliding off a chair."
He said hospital staff concerned about Mrs Normington's condition "contacted the relevant agencies at the appropriate times".
He concluded: "At every stage, appropriate actions were taken in response to changes in Mrs Normington's clinical condition.
"I feel that the only appropriate verdict is one of accidental death."