Written answers

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Department of Health

HSE Investigations

Photo of Fergus O'DowdFergus O'Dowd (Louth, Fine Gael)
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353. To ask the Minister for Health the progress to date in meeting the recommendations of the Leas Cross inquiry which recommended a number of initiatives (details supplied) including that the provision of this care, that is residential care, should be clarified formally in terms of adequate numbers of adequately trained nursing and health care assistant staff, with adequate governance structures in terms of senior nursing staff [47234/14]

Photo of Kathleen LynchKathleen Lynch (Cork North Central, Labour)
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The Health Act, 2007 introduced a significant change to how residential care settings for older people are inspected and registered. Since July, 2009 the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) is the statutory independent body responsible for the registration and inspection of all residential care services for older people. This responsibility is underpinned by a comprehensive regulatory framework comprising of the Health Act 2007, the Health Act 2007 (Care and Welfare of Residents in Designated Centres for Older People) Regulations 2009, as amended, the Health Act 2007 (Registration of Designated Centres for Older People) Regulations 2009 and the National Quality Standards for Residential Care Settings for Older People in Ireland.

All nursing homes are subject to the standards and regulations in relation to quality and safety in order to ensure the well-being of their residents. In the context of continuity of care the regulations require that an individual care plan must be developed and agreed with each resident and this plan must be kept under review as required by their changing needs or circumstances.

The staffing requirement of each nursing home is dependent on its configuration, occupancy and the dependency levels of its residents. Staff must be appropriately supervised and have access to appropriate training. It is a matter for HIQA's Chief Inspector of Social Services to determine, for each nursing home, whether the staffing level and mix is appropriate.


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