Care provider took two weeks to report Ann Marie’s death
The company responsible for the care of Ann Marie Smith took two weeks to report her death to the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
The NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission today issued a $12,600 fine to Integrity Care for failing to notify them of Ms Smith's death within 24 hours.
Commissioner Graeme Head said they were only made aware of her death by the Public Advocate on April 20 - 14 days after she died of multiple organ failure.
"Reporting serious incidents to the NDIS Commission is a critical safeguarding mechanism for people with disability," Mr Head said.
"There have been clear failings in the support given to Ms Smith that warrant our thorough and careful investigation."
Police have said Ms Smith, who had cerebral palsy, spent the last year of her life confined to a cane chair inside her Kensington Park home.
She was found semiconscious, malnourished and with severe pressure sores on April 5. She died the following day, with police launching a manslaughter investigation into her death.
Mr Head said they were notified of Ms Smith's death by the Public Advocate and the Health and Community Service Complaints Commissioner on April 20.
"Our sympathies are with the family and friends of Ms Smith and we acknowledge the widespread community concerns about the circumstances of Ms Smith's death," he said.
"We are undertaking our own investigation into the circumstances of Ms Smith's death and working alongside South Australian Police."
Mr Head said if Integrity Care chose not to pay the fine, the Commission might initiate court proceedings, where the maximum penalty a court could impose is $262,500.
Integrity Care SA worker Rosemary Maione, of Hectorville, was employed to look after Ms Smith full-time for six years.
She was sacked last week and has hired prominent lawyer Stephen Ey..
Former state MP Kelly Vincent has also been announced as co-chair of a 12-person taskforce set up by the State Government to investigate the circumstances of Ms Smith's death.
Ms Vincent will lead the investigation with disability advocate Dr David Caudrey. The taskforce will examine "gaps in oversight" and make recommendations to the federal and state governments about how to safeguard people living with disabilities in SA.
An interim report is expected by the middle of next month, and a final report is due by the end of July.
Ms Vincent, a former Dignity Party MP who has cerebral palsy, will be joined on the taskforce by public advocate Anne Gale, SA Health Office for Ageing Well director Cassie Mason and Attorney-General's Department executive director Adam Kilvert.
Trevor Harrison, who has cerebral palsy, is also on the taskforce, which will have its first meeting next Wednesday.
Originally published as Care provider took two weeks to report Ann Marie's death