Press Release

Minister of State Kathleen Lynch welcomes the National Disability Authority Report on HIQA inspections in residential centres

Minister of State with responsibility for Primary Care, Social Care (Disabilities & Older People) and Mental Health Kathleen Lynch today (Tuesday 3 May 2016) welcomed the publication by the National Disability Authority (NDA) of its “Report on HIQA inspections in residential centres for adults and children with disabilities” and noted the substantially positive findings of the review.

Minister Lynch said: “In October 2014 I requested the NDA to review the experience to date of the inspection process. The NDA’s review confirms the importance and necessity of the regulatory process; that it is working effectively and that it is protecting vulnerable people in the care of the State. The Report covers the first year of HIQA’s inspections of residential services for people with disabilities.  It is clear that significant improvements have since been made across the sector. However, I note that much work remains to be carried out to ensure that all residential facilities comply with Disability Residential Standards.”

“The Government’s priority is the safeguarding of vulnerable people in the care of the health service. Every person who uses disability services is entitled to expect and receive care of the highest standard and to live in dignity and safety. People of all abilities should have the opportunity to live rich and fulfilling lives.”

Minister Lynch added:

“I welcome, in particular, the consultation and engagement with stakeholders which was undertaken by the NDA, but most importantly the engagement with people with a disability who are resident in centres inspected by HIQA.  It is reassuring that all participants in the NDA review welcomed the HIQA regulation process and clearly saw the benefits that it brings. This report is a snapshot of what took place in the first year of inspections. There are many examples of good practice highlighted which everyone in the sector can learn from. Equally there are practices identified which need to be changed and adapted. Much of this change is already being put into effect and my Department will continue to work with all of the stakeholders involved to ensure that every person who uses disability services receives care of the highest standard.”


Additional information
The National Disability Authority was asked by Minister Lynch to conduct an independent review of the process for the implementation of regulations and standards in residential services for adults and children with disabilities. Such residential services are provided for just under 9,000 people with disabilities at approximately 1,200 locations.

The NDA’s review focused primarily on Year 1 of inspections, commenced by HIQA in November 2013. The review comprised qualitative and quantitative analysis of published reports, and engagements with key participants in the process, including residents, family members, staff, service provider managements, HIQA, the HSE and disability organisations.

Since inspections commenced in November 2013, HIQA have conducted over 1,650 inspections. By the end of April 2016, all designated centres had been inspected at least once, with many receiving more than one inspection.

The NDA’s report is available here