A LIVID Inverkip man has slammed a local care company after claiming his disabled wife's care plan was withdrawn 24 hours after she was admitted to hospital fighting for her life.

Gordon Darroch's wife Maura has secondary progressive multiple sclerosis and was visited by Karma Healthcare carers at their home in Inverkip for an hour twice a day.

Less than 24 hours after she took seriously ill with coronavirus, Mr Darroch says the local care agency - who recently received a scathing review from the Care Inspectorate - 'cancelled' visits.

Maura's disabilities mean she requires round the clock care, including assistance using toilet facilities and getting to bed.

Bosses at the Gourock care company insist they did not cancel services, adding that they reduced them due to staffing issues in Inverkip and Wemyss Bay caused by Covid.

But Mr Darroch says he is 'absolutely fuming' at the way the situation has been handled.

Mr Darroch said: "Maura was in the hospital fighting for her life and they dropped this on us.

"Maura is everything to me and this decision is affecting both of us mentally and physically."

Since returning home from hospital, Mrs Darroch has been advised Karma can offer two slots - 45 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the afternoon.

However, her husband says he feels let down by the company and that changes were made after he'd filed a complaint about Maura's care.

He said: "I complained as Maura is supposed to have two carers for the hoist she requires, but only one was turning up which was putting both Maura and the carer at risk.

"Putting in a legitimate complaint about health and safety is constructive feedback to keep both parties safe, and I genuinely believe that it has been used against us."

The Care Inspectorate recently rated the Gourock company as 'unsatisfactory' and found clients were being put at risk by staff not regularly being tested for Covid-19.

The watchdog also found around a quarter of staff had not received appropriate training around coronavirus and serious concerns were highlighted around people’s care plans, recruitment procedures and visiting schedules.

A follow-up report by the watchdog noted that improvements had been made by the company.

Mr Darroch says he is keen to emphasise that there are no issues with the frontline care staff themselves.

He added: "My wife has always loved the carers - she even calls them 'her girls'.

"The actual carers who come are great.

"But they don't have regular scheduling and sometimes my wife was left lying in her bed for hours as they didn't turn up.

"Their first weekend back after Maura got home from hospital, they were almost two hours late on Saturday and fifty minutes late on Sunday with no phone call advising of this on either day."

Whilst Maura was in hospital she received an apology letter from Karma director James Steele saying that care standards had 'slipped to an unforgivable level'.

But Mr Darroch said: "I have contacted James Steele countless times and have yet to receive an adequate reply.

"The Care Inspectorate report says it all.

"I am disgusted."

The Telegraph contacted Karma bosses and put Mr Darroch's points to them.

They said that he took his wife out of hospital before an appropriate care plan was in place.

Director Mr Steele said: "Karma lost capacity in Inverkip and Wemyss Bay due to Covid-19 staffing issues, so we simply did not have space to offer Mrs Darroch the quality care she deserved.

"After looking at the issue we offered a cut to services and agreed on two visits per day.

"At no point did we promise a particular time our staff would visit Mrs Darroch.

"No matter how we approached this situation it would still not have had the desired outcome."

Mr Steele says staffing is an issue across the entire care sector and that Karma are 'working hard' to resolve the problem.

He added: "We have been working hard to satisfy both the Care Inspectorate and Inverclyde Council.

"The care sector is under extreme pressure right now to recruit and retain staff.

"I believe we are doing an excellent job and have been doing all we can to make necessary improvements."