ITV Response Statement
We at Mega Care are gravely disheartened by the allegations made against us. Mega Care was founded under the vision of improving the standard of homecare, for both the service users and the staff, and to debunk the negative stereotype surrounding homecare companies. Mega Care is a family business through and through, and we treat every individual involved like family too. Under no circumstances will we ever put a service user in a position where they are unsafe, or uncared for. Randomised checks are made on all staff and service users, above and beyond the requirements set out by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). All the staff at Mega Care are trained to the level set out by the CQC, with the majority of staff also trained in specialist clinical techniques.
Regarding the incident presented in the video, we are appalled and disgusted by the actions of this ex-staff member. Of the 22 months that we cared for Sabina, this same staff member provided over 96% of the total visits. Regular feedback from Sabina’s daughters expressed their preference of having this staff member as their sole care worker. We believe in the importance of continuity, and understand the benefits continuity can have in the lives of our service users, especially service users with dementia. Therefore, we agreed to this request. There was no prior indication that this staff member was capable of these heinous acts. The CQC conducted a full investigation on the incident. The CQC investigation confirmed that we had implemented all required prevention processes and procedures, and the only way of improving this, would have been the installation of CCTV. Regardless of this, we are outraged by the acts of this ex-staff member, and we will be working with law enforcement and other governing bodies to ensure she does not have the opportunity to repeat these actions.
For 6 years Mega Care has been committed to providing a safe, effective, caring, responsive, and well-led service to the community, and we will always continue to do so.
Regarding the bill, we are not chasing, and we do not intend to chase any bill from the family. Our accounting team were unaware of the situation as it was still under police investigation, and sent out the bill at the end of the month as a matter of standard practice. Upon hearing this, we immediately cancelled the bill and apologised to the family.
When we were informed of the incident, The Unit Manager and I, met with the family at their home in the early afternoon on the same day. I can confirm that Ms George was dismissed as a result of the incident, and a referral was made to the Disclosure and Barring Service immediately, to ensure that Ms George is prevented from attempting to secure any other job working with vulnerable people.
We are happy that the family installed a camera when they did, and we are pleased that this story is getting the attention that it should. The CQC guidelines on safeguarding vulnerable adults are robust, and at Mega Care, we always try to go a step further. We would advise more people to provide surveillance for their family members receiving care, because even after vigorous training and vetting processes, robust quality assurance measures and consistent monitoring, the wrong candidate can still slip through the gaps.
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