Disability services publication statement 31 August 2021

Date of publication:
  • Reports published Tuesday 31 August 2021


Today, the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) has published 30 inspection reports on designated centres 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 services for people with disabilities in Ireland. 

Of these 30 inspections, inspectors found a good level of compliance with the regulations and standards in 22 centres, including in centres operated by Ability West; Brothers of Charity Services; COPE Foundation; Daughters of Charity Disability Support Services and Gheel Autism Services.
Examples of good practice observed by inspectors included:

  • In a Brothers of Charity centre in Galway, a resident spoke about their future wish to live more independently in the community. To assist them with this goal, the provider was re-configuring the kitchen area in order to support the resident with developing their cooking and life skills. The resident also spoke about how they were supported to take positive risks such as accessing their local community independently.
  • Residents in a Gheel Autism Services centre in Dublin were supported to engage in meaningful activities. A daily activity schedule was led by each resident to engage in activities such as walks to local scenic areas, arts and crafts, cooking, listening to music and gardening. A number of residents engaged in activities via video conferencing, such as exercise classes, online concerts and a social club 'Golden Gheels'.

Inspectors identified non-compliance with the regulations and standards on eight inspections.  

Inspectors found areas of non-compliance in five Brothers of Charity Services centres. Four centres required improvements to ensure they were effectively resourced and that they met residents’ needs. In one of these centres, urgent action was required by the provider, as they had not ensured that a house (to be used as a COVID-19 isolation area) was kept in a good state of repair, with evidence of water damage and the presence of mould. 

In a Catholic Institute for Deaf People centre, improvements to staffing arrangements were required, due to a significant reliance on temporary staff members. As a result, residents did not receive care and support from a regular cohort of staff who knew the residents well and who could meet their needs. Improvements were also required to protect residents from the risk of fire.

Inspectors found non-compliance in two Daughters of Charity Disability Support Services centres. In both centres, staffing and governance and management arrangements required improvement.