Sunday, 21 April 2024

    Carer sacked over ‘misconduct’

    From the outside, there was nothing unusual about Ann Marie Smith’s house, reports.

    None of her neighbours knew that inside the Adelaide home the 54-year-old sat in the same woven cane chair for more than a year, with no fridge, fresh food and unable to go to the toilet.

    When police discovered her rotting body, the scene was so graphic they struggled as they described it.

    The cerebral palsy sufferer died last month after being admitted to hospital suffering from septic shock, severe pressure sores, multiple organ failure and malnutrition.

    But Ms Smith was supposed to be under full-time care through the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

    Now her carer, provided through private company Integrity Care, has been sacked over “serious and wilful misconduct”.

    “We trusted our carer and believe that we have been completely misled by her,” the company said in a statement.

    Paramedics were called to the Kensington Park home after another carer found Ms Smith.

    She had severe ulcerated and infected tissue and was only semiconscious.

    Ms Smith was taken to Royal Adelaide Hospital where she had major surgery to remove the rotting flesh but she died the next day.

    “Despite living in a nice house, Ann died in disgusting and degrading circumstances,” Detective Superintendent Des Bray said on Friday.

    Ms Smith had lived alone since 2009 after her parents died.

    She was on an NDIS funded plan because she was unable to walk or take care of herself.

    On Friday detectives interviewed her carer who they say had been assigned to visit her home for six hours each day since 2013.

    Premier Steven Marshall said on Saturday that state-based audits and more oversight of disability services could be introduced in the wake of Ms Smith’s “sickening death”.

    “Even the basic details of this are extraordinarily confronting,” he said.


    Disability carer sacked over ‘serious misconduct’ after woman’s ‘disgusting and degrading’ death (