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Disabled woman ‘denied’ new room at care home after flooding

The woman's mum has slammed the care home in Glasgow.

Amy Kavanagh at her mom's house. (SWNS)
Amy Kavanagh at her mom's house. (SWNS)

A mum has hit out at a care home after she said it refused to give her disabled daughter a new room following a flood at the property.

Amy Kavanagh, 31, was diagnosed with Rett Syndrome as a child and is unable to walk or speak and has difficulties eating. She was removed from her room at Haydale Care Home in Glasgow, Scotland, during the early hours of Tuesday when the room above flooded, causing water damage to the floor and ceiling.

But Amy’s mother, Helen Carey, 58, said she eventually decided to take her daughter home after being told she would be moved back into her water-damaged room despite other rooms being free. Helen said: “I had no choice but to take her home – and they let me do it, the manager rang a taxi. They weren’t trying to stop me because I had no other choice.

“The ideal situation would have been to put my daughter in another room, and I would have happily stayed with her there, but the manager was adamant that the only room available was that one."

Yahoo News has contacted Haydale Care Home for comment.

Damage to the ceiling from the water at Haydale Care Home.  (SWNS)
Damage to the ceiling from the water at Haydale Care Home. (SWNS)
Amy Kavanagh was diagnosed with Rett Syndrome as a child. (SWNS)
Amy Kavanagh was diagnosed with Rett Syndrome as a child. (SWNS)

Helen said when she arrived following the incident she sat with Amy in the home’s living area, waiting for an update on the situation – but by 4pm, she still had no answers. Upon speaking with the home’s manager, she said she requested that Amy be moved to one of the six vacant beds in the home temporarily – but claims the manager refused.

Worried in case of structural damage to Amy’s room, Helen decided to take Amy home with her that night, after attempting to contact social services and multiple local care homes. Helen said the care home did nothing further to alleviate the situation or prevent her from taking Amy home.

She added: “I was worried about damage to the ceiling – leaving the door open won’t make a difference if the ceiling falls down.”

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Helen took Amy home that night – but struggled to cope with her daughter’s complex needs, as her house was not equipped with the medical equipment required for her care. After contacting Amy’s social worker in the morning, Helen returned Amy to Haydale Care Home – but said she was unhappy with the handling of the situation.

Helen said: “My two elderly neighbours came over to help me with Amy – she shut down because she was so stressed and couldn’t communicate how she was feeling. I know it was an emergency and people’s hands were tied, but they left my daughter in the living room all day and didn’t do anything until it was too late.

“What if I had been away? Would they have left her in the living room by herself, or put her back in that room? I’m scared to ask that question because I don’t know what would have happened to her. My daughter doesn’t have a voice – I have to be her voice for her. I’m just trying to fight for her rights.”

Amy Kavanagh has returned to Haydale Care Home. (SWNS)
Amy Kavanagh has returned to Haydale Care Home. (SWNS)

Struggling social care sector

The social care sector has long been struggling with workforce shortages, with a current vacancy rate of about 9.9%, according to a Skills for Care report in 2023. This equates to roughly 152,000 vacancies on any given day.

The government’s proposed changes to migrant visas have been criticised, as some believe they could further drive international recruits away from care work. However, the government said that its newly announced plans would help recruit and retain people in the domestic care workforce.

The funding, totalling £75 million, is part of previously-announced investment under the government’s People at the Heart of Care plan. The plans include launching a national career structure for the adult social care workforce, known as the “care workforce pathway”.

In addition, more than £50 million in funding will support up to 37,000 people in direct adult social care jobs to enroll on a new level 2 adult social care certificate qualification. The department has also announced that over £20 million will be available for local authorities and adult social care providers to train and supervise “hundreds” of new social work and nurse apprentices.