Disability publication statement 11 January 2018

Date of publication:

Today, the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) has published 10 reports on residential services for people with disabilities. HIQA inspects against the Health Act 2007 (Care and Support of Residents in Designated Centres for Persons (Children and Adults) with Disabilities) Regulations 2013 and the National Standards for Residential Services for Children and Adults with Disabilities, which apply to residential and respite services in Ireland. 

All 10 reports published this morning are for centres operated by the Health Service Executive (HSE). Two centres were found to have a good level of compliance with the requirements of the regulations and standards. However, inspectors found non-compliance in eight centres. 

Eight reports published this morning relate to HSE centres in the northwest of the country. Due to previous high levels of non-compliance in HSE centres in the northwest, HIQA undertook a regulatory programme from December 2016 to June 2017 to ensure the quality of service provided in the area improved. One of these centres, found to be compliant with the regulations, was a newly built centre to allow residents to move into the community. While improvements were found in six centres in the northwest, further improvements were required in areas such as the safeguarding measure of providing evidence of An Garda Síochána (police) vetting for staff, fire safety, maintaining residents’ privacy and dignity, and notifications required by the regulations to be submitted to HIQA. 

During inspection in one centre in the North West, inspectors identified such significant concerns that a decision was made during the inspection to focus solely on safeguarding and safety in the centre. Inspectors found that the provider had failed to ensure adequate measures were in place to protect residents from the risk of being harmed or abused. The provider was required to take immediate action to ensure the safety of residents in the centre. Following the inspection, and due to the level of non-compliance found, the provider was issued with a notice of proposal to cancel the registration of this centre.

In a centre in another part of the country, inspectors found that the HSE was implementing its action plan to move the residents from this centre, a congregated setting, to a community-based model of service which led to improvements in residents’ quality of life. However, further improvements were required in the areas of healthcare and staff supervision.