‘Shocking’ findings from RQIA inspection at day care provider

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A County Derry day care provider has just weeks to address what a health watchdog has described as “shocking failures.”

Patients First N.I. chairperson, Aidan Hanna, was speaking after Foreglen Community Association underwent an unannounced inspection by the Regulation, Quality and Improvement Authority (RQIA) in April 2016.

The safety and wellbeing of all those availing of day care at Foreglen Community Association is of paramount importance to RQIA

RQIA spokesperson

RQIA documents, which give details of the inspection in April, show the inspector decided to issue Foreglen with failure to comply notices in relation to policy and procedures and failure to carry out Access N.I. checks and references for staff.

The Association provides day care two days each week, with an additional group which meets twice monthly. The provision of day care is contracted by the Western Health and Social Care Trust. Referrals to the service are through Community Social Work Departments of the Western H&SC Trust.

A spokesperson for Foreglen Community Association said: “Following the inspection from RQIA and the enforcement notices issued thereafter, The Foreglen Community Association is currently working with RQIA to rectify the issues and to continue to provide a high quality service to our service users. The Foreglen Community Association will have all these issues rectified by the date specified by RQIA.”

The RQIA documents state “these matters had been raised during previous inspections of the day care setting, however, insufficient progress had been made to evidence compliance with this regulation”.

The RQIA also state the “failure to put in place appropriate recruitment practices has the potential to place vulnerable service users at risk.”

Chairperson of Patients First NI, Aidan Hanna, said his group was calling on the Western Trust to “commence an immediate safeguarding vulnerable adults investigation if one has not already started since the RQIA discovered the shocking failures.”

Mr Hanna said the Trust should consider re-locating vulnerable adults who currently use the service. He added that, had staff wanted to report concerns about bad practice or other issues, “they would have no policy to guide them.”

A Western Health and Social Care Trust (Western Trust) spokesperson said: “The Western Trust has met with Foreglen Community Association and is satisfied with the current measures being taken to meet the failure to comply notice.

“The Trust will monitor this closely to ensure Foreglen (Community Association) fully complies with policies and procedures.”

An RQIA spokesperson said: “In April 2016, during an unannounced inspection, RQIA identified concerns in relation to pre-employment checks and staff training at Foreglen Community Association day care setting.

“As a result, RQIA issued two notices of failure to comply with regulations, which set out the actions required to be taken by Foreglen Community Association, by 7 June 2016, to achieve compliance with regulations.

“The safety and wellbeing of all those availing of day care at Foreglen Community Association is of paramount importance to RQIA, and we will continue to monitor this service through our ongoing regulatory activities.”