Interior Health has appointed an administrator to oversee residential care at the troubled Summerland Seniors Village.
The administrator, who will be in place for at least three months, joins a clinical consultant already on site following last month's death of an elderly resident at the facility.
Alfredo Bonaldi, 91, died in hospital on Dec. 7 about two weeks after his son-in-law discovered him lying sick and alone in his unit, unable to summon help. Bonaldi had missed lunch and dinner the three previous days and no staff member checked his room.
Under a section of the provincial Community Care and Assisted Living Act, health authorities have the power to appoint an administrator to operate a community care facility if there are reasonable grounds to believe there is a risk to the health and safety of residents.
"This is a rare and unusual step, but one that we feel is necessary," said Dr. Andrew Larder, senior medical health officer for Interior Health.
In addition to the administrator, the clinical consultants appointed last month will remain at Summerland Seniors Village indefinitely. Larder said additional nursing staff have also been brought in to provide further assistance.
An investigative report by Interior Health and the Ministry of Heath released last week, said the operators of the seniors complex, Retirement Concepts, have been told to increase staffing, improve communication and make other changes in the wake of Bonaldi's death.
New admissions to residential care and assisted living at the Summerland facility remain suspended at this time.