Ex-Scottish boxer’s nightmare in nursing home as damning report highlights catalog of failures

A former professional boxer suffered 20 falls in 10 months while in a Scottish nursing home.

And after the last in January 2021, Lawson Thain, 86, was left sitting in a chair in agony for almost four hours before medical attention was sought.

He was eventually taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary by ambulance and died there of a combination of pneumonia and a broken hip two months later.

The Care Inspectorate upheld five complaints made by the family against Kingswells Care Home in Aberdeen.

Lawson had been a professional boxer and while stationed in the army at Deepcut, Surrey, he trained heavyweight champion Henry Cooper.

Lawson Thain as a young boxer

Nine years after being diagnosed with dementia, he was admitted to a nursing home before being transferred to Royal Cornhill Hospital for five years. In 2019 he transferred to Kingswells.

Yesterday Lawson’s daughter Donna Ewen, 55, recounted the horrific last year of her father’s life in which he suffered repeated falls, despite warnings he was at high risk.

Lawson Thain had 20 falls in 10 months
Lawson Thain had 20 falls in 10 months

He was also supposed to receive individual care for several hours a day, but two of his falls occurred during this time. It was also supposed to have 30-minute checks.

The Care Inspectorate ruled he ‘did not experience safe and effective fall prevention and management’ and also upheld complaints about nutrition, personal care and grooming , improper custody of personal belongings, and inadequate communication regarding their health, well-being, and safety.

Donna said: ‘I was disgusted to find him in a state of disarray when he was admitted to hospital after his fall.

“There was nose hair growing to his lip, hair sticking out of his ears, unkempt fingernails, badly ulcerated mouth, he had cut his shin through his socks because of his long nails and even more worryingly, dramatic weight loss.”

Long nails leads to cut on the shin
Long nails leads to cut on the shin

Donna added: “Her senior year was a nightmare.”

A spokeswoman for Bon Accord Care, which owns the care home, said they “take seriously all issues that negatively impact the people we support”.

She added: “We are deeply sorry that the care provided on this occasion fell below the expected standard.”

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