Six Deaths In Donegal Nursing Home

The Department of Health has issued a statement in relation to the deaths of six patients in a private nursing home in Co. Donegal two weeks ago.

James Reilly, Minister for Health, and Kathleen Lynch, Minister of State for Older People, learn with regret of these deaths. They have been advised that the HSE has put in place all appropriate treatment and control measures and is closely managing and monitoring the situation.

Minister Reilly also discussed the matter with the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA). HIQA visited the home last night, they will insure over the next few days that all action is taken in the best interests of staff and patients. The Ministers are being kept fully informed as this situation evolves.

The Ministers express their condolences to the families concerned.

The Deaths took place in a nursing home in Buncrana in County Donegal between March 22, 2012 and April 2, 2012. Five of the deaths occurred in a cluster in the past 5 days, and they may have been a result of a respiratory illness.

The patients are currently receiving active or preventative treatment.

Dr Peter Wright, Director of Public Health, HSE North West said “The Public Health Department in HSE North West is closely managing and monitoring the situation. Respiratory illness is a common cause of death in older people. The Public Health team will work closely with the Nursing Home management to determine the nature of the illness. Samples have been sent to the National Viral Reference Laboratory for determination.”