Disability services publication statement 13 November 2020

Disability services publication statement 13 November 2020

Disability services publication statement 13 November 2020

Date of publication:

Friday, 13 November, 2020

Today, the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) has published 21 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 21 inspections, inspectors found a good level of compliance with the regulations and standards in 13 centres, including in centres operated by Nua Healthcare Services Limited; Redwood Neurobehavioral Services Unlimited Company; S O S Kilkenny; St Michael’s House; Stepping Stones Residential Care; Talbot Care; The Cheshire Foundation in Ireland and Western Care Association. At the time of inspection, the provider was ensuring a good standard of support and care that met residents’ needs in these 13 centres. 

Examples of good practice observed by inspectors included:

  • In an SOS Kilkenny centre, residents were involved in running their own homes and participating in their local community before COVID-19 restrictions. This inspection happened when the restrictions were being eased and inspectors saw residents being supported to be safely involved in their community, through understanding the importance of mask wearing, hand hygiene and physical distancing.  
  • Residents in a Western Care Association centre were supported to have an interesting quality of life and before COVID-19, were engaging in activities which they liked and enjoyed, such as holidays abroad, members of local bowling teams, participating in tennis lessons and were active members in their local communities. 
  • In a Nua Healthcare Services centre, staff ensured that children with disabilities could continue to attend school. Staff confirmed that working relationships with school staff were maintained during restrictions, to ensure a level of continuity in the children’s educational development.

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

Non-compliance with the regulations and standards was found in three St Michael’s House centres, including issues relating to governance and management, notification of incidents and protection. In one centre, the provider had not ensured that the design and layout of the designated centre met the number and needs of residents. For example, there was a multiple occupancy bedroom with insufficient private and communal space available to residents.

In a St Patrick’s Centre (Kilkenny) centre, since the last inspection in May 2018, five different persons in charge and six different line managers had roles in this centre. This turnover of key personnel not only affected the quality and continuity of care afforded to residents, it also raised concerns about the provider’s capacity to secure and maintain proper oversight of the centre. Furthermore, some resident transfers occurred with less than 24 hours notice. This impacted on the quality of care delivered to residents, in particular around admissions into the service.

Inspectors found non-compliance with fire precautions in a Sunbeam House centre and a Saint Joseph’s Foundation centre. Both providers had not made adequate arrangements for the evacuation of all residents in the designated centres. 

Inspectors found non-compliance with the regulations and standards in one centre operated by RehabCare, including issues relating to governance and management, notification of incidents, fire precautions and positive behavioural support. There was an ongoing safeguarding risk for some residents living together in the centre. Staff spoken with acknowledged that at times residents were not always compatible.

An inspection of a centre operated by Stepping Stones Residential Care found that the registered provider had not ensured that effective systems were in place for the ongoing assessment, management and review of risk. Furthermore, due to the minimal implementation of centre-level monitoring systems, areas of concern or in need of improvement were not identified in a timely manner.    

Read all reports at www.hiqa.ie. 

  • Reports published 12 November 2020

    13 Nov 2020


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