Wednesday 22 February 2017

Disabled patients half-naked at centre, Hiqa found

Published 11/02/2016 | 02:30

Inspectors expressed serious concern about fire-safety protections Photo: Depositphotos
Inspectors expressed serious concern about fire-safety protections Photo: Depositphotos

Inspectors who visited a centre for the intellectually disabled found one resident walking around naked from the waist down in full view of others.

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Another resident in St Raphael's centre, run by St John of God Community Services in Celbridge, Kildare, was wearing no upper-body clothing, damaging their privacy and dignity.

The incidents were among a litany of failings uncovered by inspectors from the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa) during a series of inspections over a number of months last year.

The campus is made up of seven bungalows and is home to 137 residents. Inspectors expressed serious concern about fire-safety protections and the quality of life of residents.

Last June, the inspectors found poor managerial oversight and institutional practices. Inspectors were particularly concerned that there continued to be inadequate precautions in place in relation to fire safety.

Not all staff had received fire-safety training or been involved in a fire drill.

Personal evacuation plans had not been reviewed and some were inaccurate. In the case of one resident, who had become more dependent over the years, the plan was not updated to reflect this.

Understaffing was a serious problem and in the height of summer residents had to go to bed from 7pm onwards.

Residents faced delays in getting their meals and some food was cold by the time that it was served.

Hiqa issued notices to cancel the registration of three homes within the campus. This led to the closure of one and the transfer of residents from two others.

A spokesman for St John of God Community Services said the improvements ordered were accepted fully.

Corrective plans have now been sent to Hiqa.

The charity said it was fully committed to these plans being completed this year and was working with the HSE.

Irish Independent

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