An elderly man suffering from prostate cancer died just days after his condition deteriorated while in a rest home that's copped criticism from a health-sector watchdog.

Health and Disability Commissioner Anthony Hill has today released a scathing review of the standard of care provided by the rest home. It's not named but is part of the Bupa group.

Mr Hill found it failed to ensure the man, 77, received appropriate care during his short stay for respite care in 2014.

Before the man's stay, the rest home received information about the man's requirements and circumstances, including that he'd been troubled by a "large bladder mass severely obstructing urine flow" and that he was having problems with his catheter blocking.


The man, who isn't named in the report, had previously stayed at the rest home for 11 days, during which time a nursing assessment and support plan was developed.

However, on his next stay, these were not updated, nor was a plan drawn up for how to deal with the faulty catheter, which drained urine from the man's bladder.

It played up on the man's first day at the home and a nurse drained it.

He had further problems in the early hours of the second day and a nurse removed the catheter and didn't replace it, because the home didn't have a correctly sized one in stock.

By late afternoon a new one was inserted, but the man's health deteriorated that day. He vomited and later had abdominal pain.

He again vomited on the third day of his stay and his daughter, who was concerned about her dad's deterioration, took him to hospital, where he died four days later.

His death was caused by a heart attack "resulting from his underlying prostate cancer".

Mr Hill found shortcomings with the man's care, including a lack of updated care management plans and failure to escalate concerns about the man's catheter.

Bupa was ordered to apologise to the man's family and train staff members.