Man Claims Eldercare Centre Get Elderly to Wear Soiled Mask After She Vomited on It

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The headline might sound fake, but there’s apparently an image to back up the accuser’s claim.

News about a 76-year-old lady who had a soiled mask placed back on her surfaced online on Tuesday, 15 September, when the lady’s son, Mr Royston Tan, shared the incident on Facebook.

Mr Tan’s mother attends daycare at St Luke’s ElderCare Hougang Centre. The family’s domestic helper will bring the lady to the centre at 9am, and brings her home at 3pm, according to Zaobao.

Soiled Mask Allegedly Placed Back onto Lady

The mother, who has slight dementia, was unwell and vomited after lunch on that day.

After helping Mr Tan’s mother to clean up, the staff stationed at the branch located at Blk 126 Hougang Avenue 1, allegedly placed the soiled mask back onto the lady.

Image: Facebook (Royston Tan)

Mr Tan said in his Facebook post that his mother had helplessly told the staff that the mask was dirty. The staff allegedly replied the lady that it was ok and went ahead to reuse the soiled mask.

Mr Tan voiced his concerns in the post. He said, “Can’t you simply offer a clean mask for this poor elderly, does it really cost you so much for a new mask?”

He added, “Especially during this period of pandemic, good hygiene for elderly is the top priority but you failed in your basic responsibilities.”

Here’s the post:

St Luke’s ElderCare Hougang centre staff at Hougang Ave1 Blk 126 shame on you to treat a helpless elderly with such…

Posted by Royston Tan Wee Pheng on Tuesday, 15 September 2020

Other Similar Incidents of Negligence

According to Mr Tan, there were other similar incidents of negligence at St Luke’s ElderCare.

On one occasion, the staff allegedly failed to clean Mr Tan’s mother immediately after she had passed motion in her diapers. His mother was left in her soiled diapers for hours, resulting in rashes.

Mr Tan mentioned that he has provided feedback to the centre about this incident several times, but similar incidents continued.

Mr Tan ended his post by expressing his sadness.

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He said, “I wished that I could have got [sic] there earlier to relieve the suffering of my dearest mother. I am so sorry Mum!”

St Luke ElderCare’s Response

St Luke’s ElderCare’s management has provided a response to Mr Tan’s post on their Facebook page:

Image: Facebook (St Luke’s ElderCare)

In the statement, the management of St Luke’s ElderCare mentioned that they are investigating the matter, and have contacted the family members involved.

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They added, “Any such treatment of an elder in our care would not be consistent with our care values. We will take action if we find any lapses, and review our processes to see if they can be improved. We remain committed to providing the best care for our elders.”

So far, there’s been no mention of them saying that it really happened.