HIQA releases its 2023 Annual Report

Date of publication:

The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) has published its Annual Report for 2023, outlining its work to improve the quality and safety of Ireland’s health and social care services last year.

The Report details the organisation’s work to regulate and monitor services, develop national standards and guidance, provide evidence synthesis and health technology assessments to support key policy decision-making, and to further develop health information in Ireland. 

It also outlines the work undertaken by HIQA in 2023 to prepare for significant expansion of its remit into International Protection Accommodation Services, as well as under the Patient Safety (Notifiable Incidents and Open Disclosure) Act 2023 and Human Tissue (Transplantation, Post-Mortem, Anatomical Examination and Public Display) Bill (2018).

HIQA’s Chairperson, Dr Pat O’Mahony, said: “2023 was a year in which we continued our work to regulate and monitor services, conduct health technology assessments and evidence synthesis, and further Ireland’s health information landscape, while also preparing to take on a number of new functions. Extensive work was completed during the year in collaboration with the Department of Health to prepare for a significant expansion of our functions and responsibilities into private hospital services and hospital-based mortuary services, as well as a requirement for services to report notifiable incidents to HIQA.

“Furthermore, we worked with the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth to prepare for new powers to monitor International Protection Accommodation Service centres which came into effect in January 2024.”

HIQA’s Chief Executive, Angela Fitzgerald, said: “Reflecting on the past year, I am proud of the work we have progressed as we support and enable improvements in the delivery of safe, high-quality and effective care in Ireland’s health and social care services. One of our core values is collaboration and, as a regulator, this includes working with policy-makers, providers, those who use services, advocacy groups and the wider public. 

“It is only through continuous and meaningful engagements with these key stakeholders that we can move beyond regulatory compliance and together bring about sustainable improvements in health and social care services. Listening and responding to people using services is integral to our work in HIQA, as well as to the wider health service as it provides us with the information and evidence to support the delivery of safer, quality services for all. 

“I would like to thank all of our many stakeholders for working with us throughout the year, as well as HIQA staff, and the Executive Management Team and Board members for your diligence and dedication in 2023 and for your continued dedication. I look forward to HIQA’s future as we continue to deliver excellence and ensure quality care in Ireland’s health and social care sector.” 

Read HIQA’s Annual Report at www.hiqa.ie

Ends

Further information:

Marty Whelan, HIQA’s Head of Communications and Stakeholder Engagement
085 805 5202, mwhelan@hiqa.ie 

Notes to Editor: 

  • During 2023, HIQA carried out 2,189 inspections of health and social services, such as nursing homes, residential centres for people with disabilities, children’s services, public hospitals and dentists. 
  • In 2023, HIQA published 19 health technology assessments and evidence synthesis reports, providing advice to enable the best use of resources and the best outcomes for people who use health services. 
  • Last year, 3,029 members of the public and health and social care professionals took part in the National Engagement on Digital Health and Social Care, a joint initiative by HIQA, the Department of Health and the Health Service Executive. The results will help identify what the public and professionals see as the purpose of digital health information and services, as well as the benefits and barriers to development of digital healthcare in Ireland. 
  • During the year, HIQA’s online learning courses were completed 94,053 times. This includes the completion of 15,823 infection prevention and control courses, 11,459 adult safeguarding courses, 54,479 human rights-based care courses and 12,292 advocacy courses.
  • The Patient Safety (Notifiable Incidents and Open Disclosure) Act 2023 will expand HIQA’s remit significantly. Once commenced, it will amend the Health Act 2007 to provide the legislative basis for setting standards to include private hospitals. Upon commencement of the Act, it will be a requirement for health services providers, including private hospitals, to notify HIQA of statutorily defined notifiable incidents set out in the Act. It also legislates for procedures in respect of clinical audit and expands HIQA’s Chief Inspector of Social Services’ remit to review certain incidents in nursing homes.