Minister for Disability announces a new scheme of registration and inspection of residential services for people with disabilities

(30 Oct 2013)

HIQA empowered to investigate safety and quality of residential services

Minister of State with responsibility for Disability Kathleen Lynch TD, today (30 October) announced a new era for people with disabilities living in residential services. 

From 1 November, there will be a new scheme of registration and inspection of residential services for people with disabilities which will be delivered by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA).  HIQA will be able to set and monitor standards for designated centres which include residential services provided to persons with disabilities.  HIQA are also now empowered to undertake investigations as to the safety, quality and standards of these residential services.

Minister Lynch said, “The introduction of this scheme has been a priority of mine and is a commitment in the Programme for Government.  I would be the first to acknowledge that the disability sector itself has been calling for this for a number of years and I am very pleased that this long awaited scheme has now been rolled out.”

“With these detailed standards and with guidance from HIQA, providers are now empowered to deliver even higher quality services and with the power to inspect and investigate, HIQA will be able to safeguard and protect people with disabilities”, the Minister continued.  “There is emphasis on the supports that may be necessary to ensure that the unique and complex needs of each individual person are met in an appropriate manner by service providers and their staff.”

Concluding, Minister Lynch said, “as far as possible, we want people with disabilities to be able to avail of the supports they need at home or in their own community but for those who do need residential services, these regulations will help ensure those services are provided safely.  I want to acknowledge the positive contribution made by disability sector stakeholders which resulted in a focussed set of regulations for this sector.”

The Minister for Health Dr James Reilly commented "for years some of our most vulnerable citizens have not had the benefit of an inspectorate to ensure that the highest standards of care are being delivered on behalf of the State. This new development addresses this deficit; will be of real value to recipients and providers of care alike and as such I warmly welcome it."

 



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