The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) was established in 2007 to regulate and monitor the quality of residential care in designated centres for children, older people and people with disabilities. They are responsible for setting standards and for ensuring those standards are met. In 2009, HIQA published its National Quality Standards: Residential Services for People with Disabilities. The standards provide:
- a guide to individuals as to what they can reasonably expect of a residential service
- criteria that will assist service providers to assess the quality of the service provided
- the basis for registration and inspection of residential services by HIQA
Over the next several years, residential services within Cheshire Ireland will undergo inspections by HIQA. The purpose of these inspections is to ensure that all Cheshire residential services are meeting the standards and to ensure that services have systems in place to safeguard the welfare of people living within them.
In order to ensure Cheshire Ireland is fully prepared for these inspections and to ensure all services achieve compliance with the standards, Cheshire Ireland has embarked upon a 3 year project across the organisation. This is a continuation of other quality improvement projects which have been undertaken within Cheshire Ireland over the last several years and this project is part, but not exclusive, of Cheshire Ireland’s commitment to delivering the best quality service to the people it serves.
As part of the project, quality within all services will be measured, assured, monitored and reviewed on a regular basis.
The timeframe for inspection by HIQA has yet to be decided. However, it is likely that inspections will not commence until mid / late 2013. The initial inspection will help HIQA to determine whether the service will be registered or not (i.e. if it complies with all relevant legislation and meets the standards). While Cheshire Ireland does not envisage any difficulties in regard to registration, all services will need to show that they are governed and operated and on a path of planned continuous improvement.
The inspectors will be assessing:
- what it is like to live in the service
- the quality of the service provided
- whether people’s healthcare needs are being met
- the building and equipment
- how well information is provided to clients and theirfamilies and staffing
- how well the service is governed / managed
During the inspections, documentation will be reviewed, individuals (staff and clients) will be spoken to and observations of the service will be made. Following the inspection, each service will receive a report (which will be made public), and if compliance with the legislation and the standards has been demonstrated, each service will achieve registration.
Cheshire Ireland would like all staff and service users to get involved in the project.
As a Service User you can:
- Give ideas and feedback at residents meetings
- Speak to the Service Manager or fill out a feedback form
- Telephone or E-mail the Project Manager directly
- Take part in the Service Quality Questionnaire
As a Staff Member you can:
- Get involved in local initiatives
- Keep yourself informed of the project’s progress
- Discuss ideas and feedback at staff meetings
- Share good practices with other services
All staff and service users will be provided with support to prepare for the inspections throughout the course of the project.
If you have any queries on the project or any suggestions regarding quality improvement initiatives which could / should be included within the project, please contact Audrey Whelan (Project Manager) at 01-2974119 or e-mail email@example.com.