Saturday 1 October 2016

119 complaints made by whistleblowers

Published 03/03/2016 | 02:30

The Cabinet yesterday gave the go-ahead to the HSE to begin a process which could see it use its powers for the first time to enforce a cut in the price of some drugs in around three months
The Cabinet yesterday gave the go-ahead to the HSE to begin a process which could see it use its powers for the first time to enforce a cut in the price of some drugs in around three months

An intellectually disabled man in his 40's who suffered verbal and physical attacks from other residents in his care home was among the people helped by HSE whistleblower contact Leigh Gath.

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The attacks occurred after another resident who he alleged had sexually abused him was removed from the facility, according to Ms Gath, who was appointed last year to be a contact for confidential complaints.

Following her intervention, he is now a resident in another home and starting a new life.

Ms Gath said she received 119 complaints during the year, ranging from allegations of abuse, negligence, mistreatment to poor care practices in HSE.

Some 58 were investigated, upheld and resolved, while another 32 cases were investigated and no further action was necessary.

"I receive concerns and allegations of abuse, negligence, mistreatment or poor care practices in HSE or HSE funded residential care facilities from any person - resident, client advocate, family member, staff or the public," she said.

"I also receive complaints in relation to care planning or care arrangements. My role is to act as a voice for the complainant and help them navigate the system.

"By passing the concern on to the relevant person I further ensure that the HSE reviews or investigates appropriately within agreed timelines.

"I have also been contacted by many people simply seeking advice or support, which is encouraging."

Another family who were helped were granted home care for a young person who suffers 120 seizures a day and has other disabilities.

Irish Independent

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