• Sweden's news in English

Care home reported for maggots in man's foot

30 Nov 2012, 10:22

Published: 30 Nov 2012 10:22 GMT+01:00

"We children think that dad has suffered mistreatment of the highest degree," reads a complaint from the children of the 69-year-old man and filed with Sweden's National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen).

"Maggots in a human wound in Sweden in 2012? Maybe in Ethiopia."

The complaint, sent earlier in November, details how the man's children found live maggots in a wound on their father's foot during an August 2012 visit to the Carema-run Månstorps Ängar nursing home in Vellinge municipality in southern Sweden.

"The nurse who was supposed to put on a new bandage started to gag so much she had to leave the room," the children wrote.

Less than two weeks later, the condition of the man, who suffered from diabetes and cardiovascular disease, had deteriorated to such an extent that a nurse felt he should be taken to the emergency room of a local hospital.

But the nursing home's chief doctor ignored the nurse's plea, explaining that the 69-year-old already had a scheduled appointment at the hospital in two days-time.

When the man was finally taken to hospital, more maggots were discovered in the wound on his foot, which had become black due to necrosis.

"The stench which filled the room was indescribable," the man's children wrote.

The following day, the 69-year-old's leg was amputated above the knee due to bone rot. He died three weeks later.

The children's complaint also describes how the man was made to lie in his own faeces for extended periods of time and suffered from serious bed sores they claim could have been avoided had staff at the nursing home been more attentive.

According to the complaint, a nurse told the children the facility had been struggling with staffing shortages.

A nurse also told the man's children that during the summer, patients "should expect flies and maggots" in their wounds.

"For us children, this is completely impossible to accept," they wrote.

Carema responded to inquiries about the incident in a statement published on Thursday explaining that the company had launched an internal investigation in order to "thoroughly examine whether someone failed to follow our procedures".

According to Carema, Vellinge municipality's chief nurse conducted a previous investigation which concluded that staff had "acted correctly".

But the head of the municipal healthcare division, Catharina Byström, admitted staff could have handled their communication with the man's family differently.

Story continues below…

"Staff should have made an assessment about whether relatives to the person with the wound should have been informed at an earlier stage," she said in a statement.

Carema has been singled out in a number of other high-profile incidents in the last year, ranging from unchanged diapers to poor working environments, as well as a report of a dementia patient having a role of tape stuffed in his mouth.

The scandals prompted an ongoing debate about the responsibilities of private companies operating in the Swedish healthcare sector, as well as concerns about tightened quality control of elderly homes.

David Landes

Follow David Landes on Twitter

Your comments about this article

12:19 November 30, 2012 by texaslass
The maggot photo is sensationalist. Maggots help to debride the dead tissue, and are actually used in many hospitals.

The real issue is that his diabetes was not controlled and cared for properly for so long.
14:53 November 30, 2012 by k2kats
There is no comparison between controlled therapeutic use of maggots and this situation.

Hint to Carema: A defensive posture at this point is not helping you. Own it ; deal with it.

Caution to relatives: Hope for the best, but be prepared for the worst. Teach your children how to become fierce advocates so that your loved ones will be protected and, when your time comes, you will too.
18:05 November 30, 2012 by larsonczoty
And just this morning I read about an elderly woman in a nursing home located in a suburb of Chicago. Apparently a fly had flown into her ear and laid eggs - a nearby hospital removed FIFTY-NINE MAGGOTS. You can imagine the reaction had by her husband and children. Law suit is pending. I know maggots are a part of nature, but really? This woman, who was unable to speak, apparently had a larger ear canal due to some surgery years ago and was to be receiving medicated ear drops 4X daily. She had been tugging on her ear awhile trying to communicate the discomfort. Ugh.
20:14 November 30, 2012 by Decedo
In Chicago, the lawsuit will be followed by changes and/or improvements, due to the threat of additional lawsuits. In Sweden an 'investigation' will lead to some paid time off for a few staff members, and maybe some counselling.
20:44 November 30, 2012 by cogito

Right. Counseling and time off. Oh, and maybe a few staff will be sent for an expensive course of further education, run by a friend of management and paid for by....us.
09:06 December 3, 2012 by Borilla
Carema again. And again. And again. Until something is done to change the system to require adequate and competent staffing nothing will change. As shown by the comments, we all recognize how this will be dealt with. The person at the bottom will get paid time off and be cautioned NOT TO GET CAUGHT AGAIN! Until the bureaucrats who continue to allow this to happen are sanctioned there will be more nd more stories like this. Better the Inuit way. When the time comes for us to get back what we paid taxes for, they can put us on an ice floe and send us out to sea.
Today's headlines
Will Swedish shoppers go nuts for Black Friday?
Shoppers at the Walmart chain in the US on Black Friday. Photo: Gunnar Rathbun/Invision for Walmart/AP Images

Will Swedish shoppers go nuts for Black Friday?

48 minutes ago

Stores are pushing to convince Swedish shoppers to embrace US sales day 'Black Friday'. But will the phenomenon catch on?

Police: we can't protect Sweden from terrorists
Swedish police guarding the government building in Stockholm. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Police: we can't protect Sweden from terrorists

1 hour ago

After Sweden raised its terror threat alert to record high levels last week, more and more police officers on the beat warn that their weapons are not enough to prevent a potential terror attack.

The Local Recipes
How to make Swedish mulled wine: glögg
Swedish mulled wine served the traditional way. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

How to make Swedish mulled wine: glögg

2 hours ago

One drink in particular keeps the Swedes warm in winter: glögg. The beverage has been a Christmas tradition in Sweden since the 1890s. John Duxbury shares his favourite recipe with The Local.

Swedish 'knowledge hubs' to fight extremism
The new centres are aimed at discouraging Swedish youths from joining up with Islamic extremist groups such as Isis. Photo:AP/TT

Swedish 'knowledge hubs' to fight extremism

14 hours ago

Sweden's National Coordinator against Violent Extremism, Mona Sahlin, has announced a pilot programme to set up special centres in four cities in order to prevent the recruitment of people to extremist groups.

Eurovision 2016
Eurovision ticket chaos leaves fans fuming
Sweden's Eurovision 2015 winner Måns Zelmerlöw. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Eurovision ticket chaos leaves fans fuming

16 hours ago

Chaos reigned supreme on Thursday when tickets for next year's Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm were released for sale and users experienced major technical problems with the ticketing website.

Refugee crisis
Five myths about Sweden's refugee crisis
Refugees at the Malmö branch of Sweden's Migration Agency. Photo: TT

Five myths about Sweden's refugee crisis

17 hours ago

UPDATED: Sweden's reputation for openness is being questioned as it tightens asylum rules and border controls. But how much are attitudes really changing? Here's a truth check on some of the more common misperceptions about how the refugee crisis is affecting the Nordic country.

10,000 Swedes tell Google to forget them
Google is assessing almost 10,000 privacy requests from Sweden. Photo: Paul Sakuma/Google

10,000 Swedes tell Google to forget them

17 hours ago

According to fresh data, almost 10,000 Swedes have lodged privacy requests with American tech giant Google for search removals but only around 41 percent have been approved.

Swedish party named in refugee ads slams drive
Sweden Democrat leader Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

Swedish party named in refugee ads slams drive

20 hours ago

An international campaign by the far-right Sweden Democrats has been sharply criticized – after they used a centre-right mainstream party's signature alongside their own without permission.

Presented by American Express
The quickest route to UK Eurobonus destinations
Photo: Berit Watkin/Flickr

The quickest route to UK Eurobonus destinations

21 hours ago

Time for a getaway? The UK is just a short flight away from Sweden, and there are numerous great options for weekend away. Here are the top five.

Five weirdest attacks on Sweden's straw yule goat
The Gävle Goat in happier times. Photo: Andreas Bardell/TT

Five weirdest attacks on Sweden's straw yule goat

22 hours ago

An iconic Christmas straw goat that gets torched almost every year in Gävle, Sweden, was erected on Thursday. The Local takes a look at some of the most outrageous attempts to destroy it.

Five myths about Sweden's refugees
Sponsored Article
Top five UK weekend getaways from Sweden
Sponsored Article
After Paris: 'The war is not only against Isis'
How did this missing Swedish cat turn up in southern France?
Would you eat this Swedish pizza?
Blog updates

25 November

So What Does An Ambassador Do? (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"I know that my mum is super proud that I’m an Ambassador. But if you asked..." READ »


20 November

Editor’s blog, November 20th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, It has been a long and busy week for The Local as we reported on..." READ »

Sponsored Article
How Stockholm solved a startup’s housing crisis
Sponsored Article
Swedish researchers find Ice Age 'missing link'
People-watching: November 25th
Sponsored Article
Lofsdalen: The real Swedish wilderness
What do Swedes want for Christmas?
GUIDE: How to help refugees if you live in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Beaches, bikes, and buds: studying in Malmö
Mystery ice circle in Swedish river
Sponsored Article
Sweden must combat extremist 'mirage'
IN PICTURES: New royal winter snaps of Sweden's Princess Estelle
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
How to figure out healthcare abroad
Stockholm film festival's top movies
Ola Ericson/imagebank.sweden.se
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: the new epicentre of global leadership
People-watching: November 20th-22nd
Susanne Walström/imagebank.sweden.se
Sponsored Article
‘Food choices in Sweden destroy forests in Asia’
Swedish King calls for bathtub ban
Analysis & Opinion
Why you should care about Sweden raising its terror threat level
Sponsored Article
The cheapest and fastest way to transfer money
Stockholm's best international bars
Is this the best warning sign ever?
Why are more Swedes getting fat?
Sweden's tribute to Paris victims
What is Sweden's sexiest name?
VIDEO: Madonna's emotional tribute to Paris victims at Stockholm gig
Nine of the merriest Swedish Christmas fairs
Sweden cashes in on new kronor banknotes
How lonely are you in Sweden?
Roaming bear shot dead in Swedish village in Uppsala county
jobs available
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at: