Irvine’s MSP questioned how emergency powers would be beefed up for care inspectors after more than 10 devastating deaths were revealed in Fullarton.

We reported last week that more than 10 deaths occurred after COVID-19 hit the HC-One run Fullarton Care Home. It was also revealed that more than 200 deaths had been recorded across the private healthcare provider’s Scottish facilities.

Cunninghame South MSP’s told the Times new guidance from the Scottish Government would strengthen care inspectors, with NHS boards and councils taking a lead role in overseeing of homes.

She previously asked the Health Secretary how the Care Inspectorate’s powers would be strengthened during a ministerial statement on Care homes last week [Tuesday, May 19] with Jeane Freeman MSP advising of a proposed amendment to allow inspectors to bypass the courts to take action.

Ms Maguire said: “The deaths at Fullarton Care Home are devastatingly sad and my heart goes out to the families of residents. Families are entitled to feel secure that their relatives being looked after in care homes are receiving the best possible level of care, particularly during this pandemic.

“I know that they are already having a really challenging time, with the restrictions placed on contact and news like this will probably cause further anxiety and worry.

From May 18, clinical and care professionals at NHS boards and councils will have a lead role in the oversight of care homes in their area and every Health Board and council must put in place a multi-disciplinary team comprised of key clinical leads and the area’s Chief Social Work Officer.

“The guidance builds on recent actions to ensure care home residents can be kept safe. This includes amendments to the Coronavirus (Scotland) (No.2) Bill which would ensure swift intervention if residents are being put at serious risk due to services failing.

“I have written to North Ayrshire Council and the Health board to ask for an urgent update on the current situation in the Care Homes here and their implementation of this new guidance.”

A Care Inspectorate spokesperson said: “We are aware of the tragic deaths of residents at this care home as a result of suspected cases of COVID-19.

“Our thoughts are with the loved ones of those affected as well as the staff and wider community of the home.

“We have been notified of the circumstances and we are in contact with the care service and the local health and social care partnership during this difficult time.

“All of Scotland’s social care sector is working tirelessly under very difficult circumstances to care for people during the pandemic and the Care Inspectorate is doing all it can to support them.”


Scotland is in lockdown. Shops are closing and newspaper sales are falling fast. We’re not exaggerating when we say that the future of the Irvine Times, and the vital local news service we’ve provided since 1873, is under threat.

Please consider supporting the Irvine Times in whatever way you can – by paying just 90p for a copy of the paper, when you’re shopping for essential supplies for yourself and others, or by subscribing to our e-edition here.

Thanks – and stay safe.