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Senior care worker knew type 1 diabetic had not taken insulin

PUBLISHED: 19:16 22 May 2019 | UPDATED: 06:44 23 May 2019

James Delaney, 37, died at Sapphire House care home on July 28, 2018. Picture: Submitted

James Delaney, 37, died at Sapphire House care home on July 28, 2018. Picture: Submitted

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A worker at a Norfolk care home knew a type 1 diabetic found dead in his bedroom had not taken his insulin for more than three days, an inquest heard.

A worker at a care home knew a type 1 diabetic found dead in his bedroom had not taken his insulin for more than three days, an inquest heard.

Roz Harrison was a senior support worker at Sapphire House in Long Lane, Bradwell, when James Delaney, aged 37, was found at the care home at around 10.30am on July 28, 2018.

The inquest into Mr Delaney's death continued at Norfolk Coroner's Court in Norwich on Wednesday.

Miss Harrison, who is now a trainee duty manager at Sapphire House, told the court she worked on Wednesday, July 25 and Saturday, July 28.

Despite not working on the Thursday and Friday in-between she admitted she was aware Mr Delaney had not taken his insulin for three days when she arrived for her shift at 8am on Saturday.

She knew this as she had read the handover emails from the days previous, the court heard.

Miss Harrison also told the court she was aware of the care homes' policy that carers should call a general practitioner (GP) if a resident had not taken their medication for more than 24 hours.

She said this protocol was "standard practice" among care homes owned by Crystal Care but thought it was 'not her responsibilty' to call for a GP as more senior staff were on her shift that Saturday morning.

Miss Harrison also told the court she knew if Mr Delaney did not control his blood sugar levels by taking insulin it could be life threatening.

Former manager of Sapphire House - as well as three other homes owned by Crystal Care - Matt Wheeler, told the court he was not directly working at Sapphire House in the days leading up to Mr Delaney's death but would have expected members of staff to follow the care homes' protocol.

The court also heard from former general manager of Crystal Care, Sonia Bright, who was appointed in May 2018.

She said the company had made a number of "positive" changes since she started, including a new course of carer training being rolled out before Mr Delaney's death.

Ms Bright said feedback from staff who had undergone this new course of training was positive.

The inquest was adjourned until June 4.

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