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Daughter keeps up pressure for action at Easter Ross care home her mum 'escaped' from


By Louise Glen

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Catherine 'Irene' Marandola who went missing from her care home in the early hours of Sunday morning.
Catherine 'Irene' Marandola who went missing from her care home in the early hours of Sunday morning.

THE daughter of a woman who was found face down on a main road after she escaped from her nursing home in the middle of the night has said she will not rest until staff are sacked.

Denise Marandola, whose 79-year-old mum was severely injured in the incident that happened in January, said a report, due to be published by the Care Inspectorate, had upheld almost all of her complaints against the home.

Catherine Marandola, who is known as Irene, was found by an off-duty policeman face down on the road in January more than a mile from her home in Kintyre House Residential Home in Invergordon, after a full-scale man hunt to find her was launched.

A complaint made by Denise and her family to the Care Inspectorate about the lack of attention her mother received was made in January, and care commissioners made a full investigation of the home.

In the days following the incident, the owners of the home sold the business to another care company, the Sanctuary Group – who have been fully supportive of the Marandola family.

In late January, Irene Marandola, who suffers from vascular dementia, was moved to a new care home in Tain.

Denise (51), one of Irene’s four children, said: “I wish I could get some justice, but my mum is well and the pictures of her now, and how she was in January, speak for themselves. My mum is now safe and well cared for.

“But I won’t rest until the staff on duty that night are sacked for the neglect and diabolical attitude towards my mum’s care.”

It’s understood the report, which has yet to be made public, upholds a complaint that Mrs Marandola was not always provided with appropriate support and supervision to keep her safe from harm and that the home under the previous regime did not adequately communicate with her family after the January 5 incident. It is also understood to require changes on risk assessment for vulnerable people who need support and to identify a number of areas for improvement.

Catherine 'Irene' Marandola who went missing from her care home in the early hours of the morning on January 5, with her daughter, Denise.
Catherine 'Irene' Marandola who went missing from her care home in the early hours of the morning on January 5, with her daughter, Denise.

Denise Marandola meanwhile voiced concern for anyone still under the care of those she deems responsible “especially with this lockdown”.

She said of those she accuses of neglect of duty: “I wouldn’t leave them in the care of a goldfish.”

Sheila O’Connor, director of operations with the Sanctuary Group, made clear that the incident happened under previous owners. She said: “While this extremely upsetting incident occurred before we bought this care home and took responsibility for the care it provides, we have co-operated fully with the Care Inspectorate’s work and will ensure that any recommendations made are acted upon.

“We are sorry that Mrs Marandola and her family had to suffer such a traumatic experience and can reassure the families of residents at the home that we are committed to providing their loved ones with the highest possible standards of care; care that is centred on the wellbeing and happiness of each individual.”

Irene Marandola is now much happier in her new home in Tain, her daughter says.
Irene Marandola is now much happier in her new home in Tain, her daughter says.

A spokeswoman for the Care Inspectorate said: “The investigation is not yet complete. Once it is, information regarding any parts of the complaint that were upheld will be published on the website.

“However complaint outcomes which are in progress will be placed on hold until further notice.”



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