Woman dies of Hypothermia in York care home

A 91 year old woman with dementia died from hypothermia in a York care home, a recent inquest jury found.

Annie Dorren Barritt died because her room, at Oaklands Country Rest Home Kirk Hammerton near York, was too cold.

The jury at the inquest into her death said: “Her death was a direct result of an inappropriately low temperature in her room on the day of her death and a failure to provide adequate basic care in the home.”

It found that gross failures in providing her basic needs constituted neglect and contributed to the cause of her death.

Ms Barritt had taken up residence at Oaklands Country Rest Home in Jume 2012 because her dementia was getting to the state that she could no longer cope with looking after herself.

During a visit in October her relatives thought she felt cold and reported this to the care home manager.

However on the morning of November the 4th, after a poor night she was left to sleep in her bed. Around eight that evening a carer becmae concerned about her health and an ambulance was called. The crew found her temperature to be very low and tooke her to Harrogate A&E. Her temperature was 25.3 centigrade, a normal healthy temperature is usually around 37 centigrade. According to the NHS ‘Hypothermia occurs when a person’s body temperature drops below 35C’. She passed away at 10pm that evening.

A spokesperson for Harrogate council said the council is currently carrying out an investigation into this matter.

Maria Mallaband Care Group, the owners of Oaklands Country Rest Home, said it wanted to express it’s ‘deepest sympathies’ to Mrs Barrits family. The group issue a statement in which they said “At the time of Mrs Barritt’s death, we carried out our own investigation into the events surrounding this tragic death and a number of actions were taken at the time. We will now reflect on the evidence heard at the inquest to determine whether there are any further measures that should be implemented.”