(01) 536 7330 info@sageadvocacy.ie

About Us

The right to have your voice heard and to participate in making decisions which affect you is a fundamental principle in a democratic society. It is a principle simply stated as "Nothing about you /without you".

Many people face challenges to their independence due to physical or mental illness, intellectual, physical or sensory disability, lack of family and community supports or an inability to access public services that meet their needs. Some people communicate differently and with difficulty and some people slowly lose their ability to make and communicate decisions as a condition, such as dementia, develops over time. Some are abused and exploited because of their vulnerability.  Others feel disregarded or let down by healthcare services while some are harmed through adverse events or medical negligence.

In circumstances where people may be vulnerable, or have to depend on others, there is a need to ensure that their rights, freedoms and dignity are promoted and protected. Through support and advocacy the will and preference of a person can be heard and acted on; independently of family, service provider or systems interests.

The development of Sage Advocacy has been influenced by the scandals of Leas Cross in 2005, and Áras Attracta and Portlaoise Hospital in 2014.  First established in June 2014 as a support and advocacy service for older people by the HSE, The Atlantic Philanthropies and Third Age, it was in 2016 asked to explore how it might address some of the more systemic issues relating to people with intellectual disabilities in the South-East. Sage Advocacy clg was established in September 2017 and on March 1st 2018 it assumed full responsibility for the governance and future development of the service.  On July 1st 2018 the patient advocacy services, previously provided by Patient Focus, moved to Sage Advocacy which is now a support and advocacy service for vulnerable adults, older people and healthcare patients.


"To promote, protect and defend the rights and dignity of vulnerable adults, older people and healthcare patients."

Our Mission Statement

More About Sage Advocacy

Governance & Accountability

Sage was established as a support and advocacy service for older people in June 2014 by the HSE and The Atlantic Philanthropies with the support of Third Age.  Funding from The Atlantic Philanthropies ended in November 2017 and on March 1st 2018  Sage Advocacy clg assumed responsibility for the future development of the service which is now available to vulnerable adults, older people and healthcare patients.

Sage Advocacy clg is governed by a constitution and a Board which is chaired by solicitor and former Law Reform Commissioner, Patricia Rickard-Clarke. A series of Board Committees oversees the work of the service.

CRO #610824 | RCN #20162221 | CHY #22308

Auditors: Mazars, www.mazars.ie

Solicitors: O'Connell Brennan, www.oconnellbrennan.ie

Data Protection Advisors: Sytorus, www.sytorus.com

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Comments & Complaints

For Sage Advocacy to do the job that is expected of us we need to be independent of family, provider and systems interests. While our approach is to collaborate, where possible, we do also need to challenge, where necessary. We may also, from time to time, get our approach wrong simply because we are often last rather than first responders and situations are often quite complex by the time we are asked to become involved.

We value feedback on our work and approach.  Feedback, of all forms, is important to us.  If you would like to bring something to our attention, send us a comment or make a complaint please email us at info@sageadvocacy.ie  or complaints@sageadvocacy.ie.  Where a complaint cannot appropriately be handled internally, or you are not satisfied with the outcome, an Independent Complaints Review Panel can be asked to review it.

The guidelines below are intended to explain the process of making a complaint relating to services provided by Sage Advocacy and its representatives.  All complaints are treated confidentially – this means that Sage Advocacy will only involve people who are directly involved in the complaint. 


  1. As a first step, you should raise your issue with the Executive Director of Sage Advocacy by filling in a Complaint Form.
  1. The Executive Director will attempt to resolve the issue and/or may decide to refer it to the Independent Complaints Review Panel.
  1. If you are unhappy with the Executive Director’s decision you can request that your complaint is referred to the Independent Complaints Panel.
  1. You will need to fill in another short form (Request for a Review of a Complaint Form).
  1. The Independent Complaints Review Panel decides if it can review the complaint.
  1. If a review is necessary, further information may be sought from you.
  1. The Independent Complaints Review Panel makes its decision.
  1. You may be able to have the decision reviewed by the Ombudsman.

Guidelines for making a complaint

  • Who can make a complaint?
    • A client who uses Sage Advocacy services;
    • Somebody acting on the client’s behalf provided that it is clear that the client has sought assistance from that person in making the complaint;
    • Somebody acting on the client’s behalf where there is clear evidence that the client does not have the capacity to make a complaint or to ask another person to assist; or
    • A bona fide third party, e.g. relative, social and health care provider or nominated representatives under the Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Act 2015, or a person considered by the Panel to be a bona fide third party who was not involved in assisting with the original complaint.
  • What happens if I make a complaint?

    All complaints received will be recorded on receipt and the Operations Manager/Executive Director will be made aware of them.  Where appropriate, the Operations Manager/Executive Director will first request the relevant Sage Advocacy Representative and/or Regional Coordinator to deal with complaints informally. If you are not satisfied with the outcome you may engage in a more formal process which will involve:

    • Clarification of all the details of the complaint by a senior member of staff nominated by the Executive Director.
    • A report of the investigation of the facts of the complaint and a proposed resolution will be forwarded to the Executive Director who will make a decision on the complaint. Sage Advocacy will endeavour to complete this process within 28 days.  However, the complexity of some cases may require more time.
  • What happens if I am not satisfied?

    If you have availed of the internal complaints process within Sage Advocacy and are not satisfied, you may request a review of your complaint by the Independent Complaints Review Panel.  If you have not already done so please contact complaints@sageadvocacy.ie or phone 01 536 7330.  A request for a review should be made within 30 days of the decision on the complaint.  In certain circumstances the Panel may agree to extend this time limit.  You will need to set out the grounds on which the review is being sought and explain why you believe that the decision on the complaint was wrong.

  • How will my request for a review be handled?

    The Panel will decide if a review is necessary.  If a review is not felt to be necessary, the Chair of the Panel will inform you in writing of the reasons for its decision.  The Panel’s decision is normally final and conclusive. However, it may, in certain circumstances, be reviewable by the Ombudsman.

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2019 | Sage Advocacy. All Rights Reserved. | CRO #610824 | RCN #20162221 | CHY #22308.