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Latest inspection reports published by HIQA that show evidence of non-compliance by some nursing home providers in critical areas including governance and management, infection control and residents’ rights are alarming, Sage Advocacy has said.

Sarah Lennon, Executive Director, Sage Advocacy said the fact that HIQA inspectors identified non-compliance by 35 nursing homes out of a total 61 nursing home inspected in the first six months of this year is a major concern.

The national charity, which provides support and advocacy services to older people, vulnerable adults and healthcare patients, said the latest HIQA inspection reports clearly demonstrate that some nursing homes have fallen far short of the level of care which should be provided.

Sarah Lennon said: “We are particularly concerned that the inspections identified non-compliance in very critical areas specifically governance and management, infection control, premises, protection, fire precautions, residents’ rights, healthcare and risk management.

“We know from our advocacy work that nursing home residents made enormous sacrifices throughout the pandemic, we know that many were and continue to be fearful of the impact that Covid-19 can have.

“But these latest HIQA inspection reports once again expose the “dangerous architecture” on which the current system of care in congregated settings for older people is built.

“The fact that some nursing homes were not compliant with infection control requirements and failed to be compliant in relation to residents’ rights should be a red flag to everyone in this country.

“In the Programme for Government – Our Shared Future, the Government pledged to establish a Commission on Care and that this commission would “assess how we care for older people and examine alternatives to meet the diverse needs of our older citizens”.

“As a country we cannot wait any longer for action on this – we urgently need the Commission on Care to be established to immediately start examining the weaknesses in the current systems of health and care.

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