90-year-old dementia sufferer found wandering Bolsover streets after fault with care home door

Mrs Mason's children Andrew and Joanne
Mrs Mason's children Andrew and Joanne

A family has hit out at a care home after their 90-year-old mum, who has severe dementia, left unnoticed in the early hours of the morning in freezing cold temperatures.

Marjorie Mason walked out of Millfield Care Home in Bolsover with another resident after a fault with a security door.

Mrs Mason, who uses a walking frame, was wearing just a dress and a cardigan.

The pair were found by a passer-by almost a mile away in Bolsover town centre.

Her son, Andrew Mason, 52, of Greenaway Drive, Bolsover, said: “When I got the call I was thinking the worst because she had not got a coat on or anything on her feet.

“I was really annoyed that they had let this happen because they said they could take care of my mum.

“It has caused us an awful lot of trauma.”

A report into the incident says Mrs Mason left unnoticed at around 4.30am on Sunday, February 5.

After a search of the care home at 5.15am staff contacted police just after 5.30am.

The passer-by who found the pair took them to Ravensworth Care Home in Duckmanton before police returned them to Millfield at 6.30am.

The report also states that Mrs Mason had got out into the courtyard on two previous occasions the day before.

Another resident also walked out days before on February 1 and was returned by ambulance.

Mr Mason said: “My mum was missing for over an hour before the care home found out.

“I am not satisfied with the answers they have provided.

“We think they are sweeping it under the carpet.”

Mrs Mason suffered no physical injuries but she was said to be in an ‘agitated’ state on her return.

She has been going to Millfield Care Home for 14 months for respite care.

She is now in Walton Hospital.

The report into the incident says that the door security was ‘flawed’.

It states: “The inner front entrance door has a key code exit but the right hand leaf can be operated independently if the internal finger bolt is not slid fully into place. We can conclude that the only likely access point was an insecure front door.”

A spokesman for the care home said: “We take incidents like this very seriously, and immediately reviewed the door locking systems, replacing the faulty lock and adding an additional level of security to the doors. The doors have also been alarmed. We have met with the families to update them of this review and we have notified all the relevant authorities and regulators, who have been supportive of our action.”