Have Your Say: New Nursing Homes Standards Launched For Nationwide Public Consultation


HIQA has commenced a nationwide public consultation on new National Standards for nursing homes and residential care settings providing services to older people.

Nursing Homes Ireland is encouraging people within the nursing home sector and the wider public to input into the consultation process. The Draft National Standards for Residential Care Settings for Older People can be read here. The Draft Standards are a revision of the National Quality Standards for Residential Care Settings for Older People that have been in effect since 2009. NHI  participated on the Standards Advisory Working Group to feedback in respect of Standards. Valerie Joy, Chair NHI's Regulatory Affairs Subcommittee, and Tadhg Daly, NHI CEO, were the NHI representatvies. NHI's Regulatory Affairs Subommittee has inputted two submissions in respect of the Standards. Private and voluntary nursing homes have participated in HIQA focus groups that brought nursing home residents, staff and relatives of residents together to offer view in respect of care provision in the context of discussion surrounding the revision of the National Quality Standards.  


What resources are available to support my input? 

The following resources are provided to support people seeking to input to Draft Standards:


Who are the Standards relevant to? 

The Standards are relevant to all people living in a residential care centre or a respite care centre for older persons. They focus on the individual and set out the rights of residents, including their entitlement to protection, high quality, safe and respectful care, as well as matters such as staffing and management of the residential care settings.


The Standards apply to services provided in all nursing homes, and other care settings such as geriatric hospital wards, run by the HSE, private organisations or voluntary bodies.


Why new standards? 

Marie Kehoe-O’Sullivan, Director of Quality and Safety Improvement at HIQA, states: “The current standards are now five years old and nursing home care has moved on during this time. We have also learned a lot from five years of inspecting these centres and the new standards reflect where significant improvements have been made but also where further attention is needed. 


“We know that staff and management in residential care want to provide the best care for their residents and these new standards will help them promote improvement in areas such as medication management, person-centred care, infection prevention and risk management. Service providers are also more aware now of their responsibilities in ensuring the safety and wellbeing of residents and, having experienced regulation of the sector, they are also clear on the consequences of not doing so.


“It must be noted however that only 1 of the 566 centres inspected by HIQA in 2013 resulted in enforcement procedures being taken. This is clear evidence of regulation working for the benefit of the people using these services.”






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