NHI statement re HIQA’s 2015 overview on the regulation of nursing homes

Nursing Homes Ireland today, 14th April, acknowledges publication of HIQA’s Annual overview report on the regulation of designated centres for older people – 2015. The report provides an overview of HIQA’s extensive regulatory programme encompassing 577 nursing homes that are registered with the Authority. It highlights the very high level of regulation and inspection that is applicable to nursing home care in Ireland and the deep-reported reporting culture within nursing homes. These fundamental principles help ensure residents, relatives and the wider public that the highest standards are being applied and independently observed within these home-from-home settings on an ongoing and continuous basis. Such standards are not applicable for other health services.

The ‘key findings’ within the report inform that the 343 centres that were inspected by HIQA during the course of the year provide reassurance regarding good levels of compliance with the stringent regulations and standards that are applicable to nursing homes. It is important to note the report focusses on areas requiring improvement and it states numerous specific examples of good practice in nursing home care are not documented within it, but published within individual inspection reports. It does provide an analysis of good practice, further endorsing high quality care that is provided by dedicated, committed and caring management and staff within nursing homes.

The report highlights high standards of care, providing further reassurance for residents, their relatives and friends and wider public.

It is important to note Annual overview report on the regulation of designated centres for older people – 2015 highlights the critical issue of adequate staffing levels. NHI recently engaged direct with the Authority with regard to it advancing the present crisis in the registration of nurses with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI). We are urging the Authority to push for resolution of the persisting crisis. 2,000+ applications are within the system with almost 600 candidates at an advanced stage in the registration process. Applications are taking up to a year or beyond for processing. The extraordinary delays are threatening healthcare delivery and we again urge the health regulator to seek resolution to this crisis presenting.

NHI has long-standing proactive engagement with the Authority in advancing healthcare delivery within nursing homes and will continue to engage with it to drive continuous improvements in care of older persons.