Residents at new aged-care home already at ‘serious risk’

ELDERLY residents at Townsville's newest aged care facility could be at "serious risk" after the home failed a government audit, with the operator saying the incident was isolated.

PresCare's Protea aged care facility in Douglas, which cost $30 million to build and can house up to 140 residents, opened to much fanfare in March.

But less than two months later, an audit by the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission on May 1 found Pres-Care had failed to meet "expected outcomes".

On June 11, the commission ruled Protea had put the safety, health or wellbeing of a client at "serious risk".

The facility in Angus Smith Drive is one of 16 nursing homes in Queensland that failed quality audits in 2018-19.

PresCare general manager of customer experience Karyn Kelly said the issues identified by the commission at Protea related to "a particular set of circumstances that were present at the time in relation to one resident".

"At the time of the incident, the facility had recently opened and there were some initial problems with the implementation of PresCare's policies and procedures," she said.

The five-level complex has a 20-bed special care unit for people with dementia and 120 beds providing medium and high-level care, along with services such as a gymnasium, rooftop garden, cafe and hairdressing salon.

The Townsville Bulletin previously reported 20 residents were due to move into the facility on April 8 and the rest would move in in October.

PresCare refused to reveal how many residents were living in the facility during the audit and how many lived there now due to "privacy policies".

For this reason, PresCare did not confirm or deny if the resident was in any way physically harmed or injured.

"Protea continues to accept residents in line with our opening intake schedule," Ms Kelly said.

The Townsville Bulletin previously reported the charge for a standard room at Protea was a $350,000 deposit, which was fully refundable, with some concessional rates offered.

A spokesman for the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission confirmed Protea was due for reaccreditation in April 2020 and it would continue to monitor the service closely.