Children’s services publication statement 26 January 2021
Tuesday, 26 January, 2021
The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) has today published an inspection report on a children’s residential centre.
HIQA is authorised by the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth under Section 69 of the Child Care Act, 1991 as amended by Section 26 of the Child Care (Amendment) Act 2011, to inspect children’s residential care services provided by the Child and Family Agency (Tusla). HIQA monitors Tusla’s performance against the National Standards for Children’s Residential Centres and reports on its findings to the Minister.
An announced inspection of a statutory children’s residential centre in the Tusla West region was carried out between 11 and 12 November 2020. The findings of this inspection indicated good levels of compliance with the national standards.
Inspectors found that governance and management structures set out clear lines of authority and accountability. There was a mix of experienced and new staff in the centre who were aware of their roles and responsibilities. Monitoring and oversight mechanisms were used in the centre to ensure a consistent quality of care was provided. Risk was well managed due to good structures and systems in place. However, a full suite of policies, procedures and guidance for children’s residential centres was not yet in place.
Planning for children was good. Children were supported to access identified external supports in line with their assessed needs. There were effective lines of communication with children’s social workers and external professionals, which provided a continuity of care for children. While child-in-care reviews were held in a suitable manner, updated care plans were not always provided to the centre staff in a timely way.
Children said that they liked living in the centre and described the staff team as being committed and respectful of them. Social workers described the team as being very responsive to the children’s needs. An external professional described the staff team as kind and caring, and said that they provided children with safe and predictable care. Children were safeguarded from abuse and neglect and their welfare was promoted. Children’s health, wellbeing and development was protected. Children were supported to maintain contact with their families and the staff team worked with children to ensure they maintained a sense of identity with their families.
The inspection report and compliance plan can be found on www.hiqa.ie.