Chief inspector not notified of ‘allegations of abuse’ at Limerick nursing home - Hiqa

Fintan Walsh


Fintan Walsh


Chief inspector not notified of ‘allegations of abuse’ at Limerick nursing home -  Hiqa

The  West Limerick nursing home says it has ‘zero tolerance approach’ to abuse

A WEST Limerick nursing home did not investigate complaints that could be interpreted as “allegations of abuse”, according to an inspection report by the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa).

The health watchdog carried out two unannounced inspections at Killeline Nursing Home, Newcastle West, on March 28 and March 29, to review its dementia care.

According to the report, at the time of inspection, there were 60 residents at the facility, and a third of whom had been diagnosed with dementia.

Hiqa found the centre to be majorly non-compliant in the area of safe care and support, particularly in relation to the handling of complaints.

Residents spoken with told the inspector that they “felt safe in the centre” and that staff spoken with said that they were “aware of the procedure to follow in the event of an allegation of abuse”.

However, while the inspector found that measures were in place to protect and safeguard residents, “these were not always adequate”.

“The inspector found that a number of complaints in the complaints log could be construed as allegations of abuse and had not been investigated as such. These allegations had not been notified to the Office of the Chief inspector, as required under the regulations.

“The person in charge undertook to retrospectively submit the required notifications to Hiqa. In addition, there was an ongoing safeguarding allegation which had not been clearly resolved or addressed in a satisfactory manner in line with the safeguarding policy. In addition, this allegation had not been followed up with appropriate action to protect the vulnerable resident from further alleged abusive interactions,” the health watchdog report stated.

Since the inspection, the nursing home said that a safeguarding plan is now in place for residents were the subject of an allegation of abuse.

“Awareness is increased for staff also by speaking about vulnerable residents in daily handovers. There is zero tolerance approach to any form of Abuse in Killeline Nursing Home and our culture supports this ethos,” the nursing home said. 

Killeline was “substantially compliant” in safe and suitable premises and in complaint procedures, according to the report.