Nursery brings in new manager after child Calpol overdose

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A nursery judged inadequate by Ofsted after a child was given an overdose of Calpol has employed a new manager to turn it around.

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Lynda Bartholomew took over as manager of the nursery in April

Ladybird NHS Nursery in Southend brought in Lynda Bartholomew, who won Southend Council’s early years inspirational manager award this year, following the incident.

The January inspection was prioritised following a notification received by Ofsted regarding medication given to a child that resulted in an overdose.

The child was given a 5ml dose of Calpol at home between 8am and 9am, but staff administered a second 5ml dose at 11am. The child, who still attends the nursery, was taken to hospital as a precaution, but showed no ill effects. The nursery said the overdose was due to a ‘staff miscommunication’.

Official Calpol dosage advice recommends leaving at least four hours between 5ml doses in children aged between six months and two years, and between 7.5ml doses in children aged between two and four years old.

The inspection, which took place one month on from the incident, found that procedures in place at the nursery to promote children's ongoing health through medication administration were still not successfully monitored to prevent a similar situation from occurring.

The report also found that the nursery, which provides places for 68 children, had not employed a manager to take responsibility for childcare for over a year.

Ms Bartholomew (pictured), who has over 10 years experience in early years management, was hired in April to address the concerns raised by Ofsted.

A monitoring visit carried out by the watchdog in July found that that ‘considering all the evidence, the inspector is of the opinion that the setting has taken prompt and effective action to address the points for improvement.’

In a letter to the nursery after the visit, Ofsted said the setting had taken ‘swift action’ regarding the changing of medicine procedures and that Ms Bartholomew had already had a ‘significant and positive impact on the running of the nursery’.

Ms Bartholomew said, ‘I strongly believe that every child in my care deserves the best possible start in life and am committed to ensuring that I support the nursery team to ensure that this continues to be the case at Ladybird.

‘I’ll be building on the nursery’s strengths and learning lessons from the past to make positive improvements for the future.’