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Guidance on restrictive practice (DCOP)

Status: Updated on

This guidance has been produced to assist registered providers of designated centres for older people and staff working in these centres to focus on quality improvement in the area of restrictive practice. Providers should use this guidance to promote a care environment that is free from restrictive practice and to assess the use of restrictive practices in their centres with a view to reducing or eliminating their use. In cases where restrictive practices are assessed as being necessary, this document will provide guidance on ensuring the safety and wellbeing of residents.

This self-assessment questionnaire has been developed by the Chief Inspector of Social Services within the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) to aid service providers to prepare for the Chief Inspector’s restrictive practice thematic programme.

The Quality Improvement Plan is specifically designed for use in the thematic inspections of restrictive practices in designated centres for people with disabilities. This document should be used in conjunction with the self-assessment questionnaire for restrictive practices. Once a provider or person in charge has completed the self-assessment questionnaire, this plan provides an opportunity for the provider and person in charge to target areas for improvement under each of the eight themes. This quality improvement plan is not required to be submitted to the Chief Inspector with the self-assessment questionnaire, but will be reviewed during the inspection phase of the programme.

This assessment judgment framework is specifically designed for use in the thematic inspections of restrictive practices in designated centres for older people. This programme of inspections is focused primarily on the National Standards for Residential Care Settings for Older People in Ireland (2016).

The purpose of the assessment judgment framework is to support inspectors in gathering evidence when monitoring or assessing a designated centre. The framework sets out the lines of enquiry to be explored by inspectors in order to assess performance against the standards being monitored.

The Office of the Chief Inspector hosted a webinar on the restrictive practices thematic programme registered providers of nursing homes in June of 2023. You can access the slides from the webinar at the link below and please also see the frequently-asked questions document which was drafted to address the most common queries that arose during the webinar.