Disdainful of allegations of abuse and systemic impunity

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Today, the Commission took a closer look at Japara Healthcare Limited’s handling of the treatment of the resident, Mr. Clarence Hausler, as well as whether this was just a case or a global cultural issue. within the organization.

Senior assistant lawyer Peter C Rozen QC previously said during his opening speech yesterday that there had been nearly 300 serious assaults reported between September 2015 and May 2019 on Japara residents in their portfolio of homes.

However, this claim was refuted by Mark Andrew Sudholz, CEO and CEO of Japara, today when he testified. He says the number of “substantiated” abuse allegations was much less.

“In this timeline that we have is a timeline of alleged abuse allegations … You said there are 298 issues or allegations of abuse … In this process, you look at the allegation and the suspicions around it, it’s quite often that it’s unfounded, you know? So it’s not about abuse at all. It’s just an allegation and it becomes unfounded, and we are looking at it in detail, ”said Sudholz.

“Of the 49 facilities and about 4,000 residents, the abuse allegation that corroborates it, and then we deal with, is less than 100 over four and a half years. I don’t think it’s systematic at all.

Mr Rozen said the main reason they brought up Japara’s documentation was to research systemic issues of abuse in nursing homes and the documents provided appear to show a tendency of particular caregivers being subjected to multiple allegations.

With respect to Mr. Hausler’s example, there were two incidents that were not investigated, which Mr. Rozen proposed to allow for the third abusive event.

Mr Rozen also referred to many other examples in Japara’s files and pointed to cases where the same staff members had been accused of different abusive behavior or “brutal treatment”, including until April of this year.

A culture of impunity for staff was suggested by Mr Rozen, but Mr Sudholz disagreed with his assertion.

Mr Sudholz said that except for the situation with Mr Hausler, a majority of residents were satisfied with the care they received from Japara staff at the Mitcham site.

The Commission also examined the 2016 emails from Mr Sudholz to the Japara Board of Directors and his use of terms intended for Ms Noleen Hausler, daughter of Mr Hausler.

In the content, Mr Sudholz called Ms Hausler “vexatious” for her efforts to improve the quality of care for her father, which he wanted to clarify the context behind its wording.

Mr Sudholz says: “I think I described it – a circumstance that I experienced led me to say to – write an email saying it was vexatious … It’s about mid-way. -2016 that I attended a meeting of the director of the establishment. … We had a meeting of 40 residents and parents that I attended.

“And at that meeting there were a number of people who were very abusive, very aggressive towards me, yelled at me and showed me little respect as the CEO of a large organization. And j found this disappointing, and I was quite clueless about it. ”

The e-mail sent to the Japara board members was read by Mr. Rozen: “Hello everyone, you will be delighted to hear that we have reached 100% occupancy in Mitcham (nursing home for elderly) ACF for the first time despite ongoing complaints and vexatious approach from Noleen Hausler and his activist group.

At the end of Mr Sudholz’s testimony, Commissioner Ms Lynelle Briggs AO stated that she was troubled by the testimony she had heard over the past two days and that she had a problem with the defense of the Japara organization by taking responsibility for substandard care cases. .

At the end of his court appearance, Mr Sudholz reiterated his apologies and regrets to Ms Hausler for her experience, saying, almost in tears, that he was “disappointed that we let you down”.

Hearings continue tomorrow, Wednesday, June 26, at 9:30 a.m. AWST in Perth, WA.


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