Woman died after fall, aged 99

Hatfield Coroner's Court

Hatfield Coroner's Court - Credit: Archant

Just six months short of her 100th birthday, a woman died after a fall at a nursing home due to her deteriorating health, a coroner ruled earlier this week.

Rosa Stafford passed away peacefully in her sleep at Orchard Nursing Home, in Camp Road, St Albans, on October 28, 2013.

She suffered a fall on July 28 last year and was taken to Watford General Hospital before she was moved to the care home just under three months later.

An inquest on Tuesday heard that various tests were carried out after her fall, including a CT scan which revealed a bleed on the brain. But after further investigation this turned out to be old damage.

Deputy coroner for Herts Graham Danbury read out a report from Dr Jo Bernstein, a consultant geriatrician at Watford General Hospital, which explained the bleeds and also an underlying disease Mrs Stafford had which affected the blood vessels supplying the brain.

He said: “Having read Dr Bernstein’s report, yes there was bleeding on the brain, but this was long standing. It doesn’t appear it was caused in any way by the fall.

“It seems that the bleed on the brain was one of a number of long-standing conditions your mother had, which greatly affected her balance.

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Summarising, he went on: “I’m satisfied that it’s more likely than not that she fell because of her general condition, rather than that the fall made matters worse.”

Mr Danbury recorded a verdict of natural causes.