Serious fire safety issues found at Kerry nursing home

Serious fire safety issues found at Kerry nursing home

Serious fire safety issues have been found at a Kerry nursing home by the State's health services watchdog.

Inspectors from the Health Information and Quality Authority made an unannounced visit to Lystoll Lodge Nursing Home near Listowel, last November.

There were 46 residents in the nursing home when the inspectors called.

A previous inspection last April found shortcomings in the centre's fire safety system.

In November, inspectors found three oxygen cylinders stored in a bedroom shared by two residents who did not need them and insisted that they were removed immediately to a safe storage area.

The inspectors also sought an immediate assurance from the provider that all residents were safe in the centre on the night they left the premises.

Inspectors found that fire doors did not appear to be capable of adequately containing smoke and fire.

A seal on one fire door appeared to have been repaired with sticky tape; part of a seal was missing on the door of the smokers' room and the fire door leading to the laundry room was wedged open.

Fire evacuation equipment was inadequate and there was no evidence that the fire alarm was serviced on a quarterly basis.

Another unannounced inspection at St Patrick's Hospital, John's Hill, Waterford, last November found that some of the 78 residents were finding it difficult to live in the multi-bedded rooms.

The HSE is committed to replacing St Patrick's Hospital with a new purpose-built community nursing unit by December 2019.

There have been some improvements in the hospital's communal areas and seven beds have been removed from two wards with both residents and staff benefiting from the increased personal space.

Inspectors saw that the new building was well underway and that June was the date set for handover by the builders.

Both the providers and project team are confident that the new centre will be fully completed and operational by the year-end.

An unannounced inspection of St Ita's Community Hospital, Newcastlewest, Co Limerick, last October found that the HSE-run facility also raised fire safety concerns.

The inspectors, who visited the centre to assess fire safety, were not assured that adequate arrangments were in place to ensure that the 70 residents could be safely evacuated.

A construction company was appointed by the health authority to address a number of fire safety measures earlier this year.

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