Home for elderly faces penalties

PUBLISHED : Friday, 17 September, 2004, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 17 September, 2004, 12:00am

The Social Welfare Department is seeking legal advice on whether it should revoke the licence of a home for the elderly in Kowloon after residents were forced to use buckets as toilets.

The poor hygiene led to an outbreak of gastroenteritis.

Deputy Secretary for Health, Welfare and Food Salina Yan said other punitive measures were being considered, including the Social Welfare Department ending its rental of some of the home's bed-spaces. She made the remarks after a meeting of the Elderly Commission.

Her department is waiting for the Social Welfare Department's report on the incident.

The move to seek legal advice follows the transfer of 30 residents from the Shui Oi Convalescent Home in Waterloo Road, Kowloon, by the Health, Welfare and Food Bureau to a centre in Sai Kung.

Fourteen residents and four workers contracted gastroenteritis after being forced to use buckets as toilets. The toilets were closed last month.

Yesterday, the Department of Health submitted its report on the incident, which recommended, among other things, that homes for the elderly improve hygiene standards, Ms Yan said.