According to government minister Brigitte Bourguignon, the French government wants to file a criminal complaint against home care company Orpea (ORP.PA) over claims of maltreatment of elderly patients.
According to the health ministry, after a month and a half of examination into the group’s management and financial procedures, the government discovered “severe dysfunctioning in the group’s management, to the detriment of the treatment of its inhabitants.”
After detecting apparent irregularities in how the funds were utilized, the government said it will transmit its findings to state prosecutors and seek to recover public monies supplied to the corporation.
While the government investigation “does throw light on certain dysfunctions,” Orpea said later on Saturday that it also “allows us to conclude that there is no organized’system’ that would lead to widespread abuse.”
“We have taken full measure of the justified emotion evoked by these dysfunctions, many of which come from a shortage of care and support staff that impacts us as well as the broader nursing home business,” stated Philippe Charrier, Orpea chairman and CEO.
In January, reports of serious deficiencies in hygiene treatment in an Orpea home for old persons in a posh Paris suburb were made public in a book by independent journalist Victor Castanet. The French firm has frequently denied systemic flaws, and claimed in a statement released on Saturday that the book contains “many especially serious charges.”
Over the next two years, the government will inspect the country’s 7,500 elderly care institutions and wants to strengthen legal and accounting requirements to better oversee entities that manage elderly care, with the goal of improving transparency over the use of public funds, according to the government.