We regulate and inspect residential services for people with disabilities to ensure that they receive an appropriate standard and quality of service.

Our inspections can be announced or unannounced. We inspect in order to:

  • decide on an application by a provider to register a centre
  • monitor continuing compliance with regulations, National Standards and conditions of registration
  • explore the effect of an event, change of circumstance or receipt of information by HIQA — any of which might affect the safety and wellbeing of residents

How we make our decisions

We have adopted a common approach to inspecting and making judgments.

This common approach is informed by our Assessment Framework and our Judgment Framework. These documents seek to provide assurance that our work is both transparent and consistent. They are publicly available so everyone can see that we make our decisions in a fair and consistent way.

The assessment framework outlines the key questions inspectors should ask, the evidence that should be gathered and lines of enquiry that should be followed. In turn, the Judgment Framework outlines the degree to which an aspect of the service may be deemed by HIQA to be non-compliant with regulations and or National Standards — be it a major non-compliance, a moderate non-compliance or substantially in compliance.

During the inspection

The inspector will make observations about the premises and the care provided.

How the residents’ privacy, dignity and autonomy is respected and promoted, and how the service is managed and governed. The inspector will be happy to speak with any resident, family member, representative or staff member; and will also understand that some residents and relatives may not want to talk with an inspector.

The inspector will also send out resident and family questionnaires to the centre before announced inspections take place. This is to allow residents and their relatives to provide feedback to HIQA should they wish to do so. Throughout the inspection process, the inspector will be required to act in line with our Code of conduct for inspectors and our Code of Business conduct. Where concerns arise, we encourage services to inform us as soon as possible.

After the inspection

An inspection report is produced after each inspection.

If the report does not identify any individual resident, the report will be published on this website. If a report potentially does identify a resident, for example in a very small centre, the report may not be published online. However, whether a report is published online or not, all service providers are required to make reports available to residents and their families once they have been finalised.