Hiqa concern at Cope unit

An inspection report by health watchdog Hiqa has raised concerns over aspects of care at a centre for people with disabilities in Cork.

The subject of the report, carried out by the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa), is a designated centre for people with disabilities operated by Cope Foundation, which provides accommodation and care for people with disabilities including dual diagnosis, autism, and epilepsy, and individuals with behaviours that might challenge. The centre comprised nine units over four separate addresses and had 44 residents at the time of the unannounced inspection.

According to the report: “This inspection was triggered as a result of information received by the authority.”

The report noted many examples of good practice but also detected some areas of non-compliance, with commitments from the provider to address the issues raised.

According to the report: “One unit housed two residents with complex care needs and the accommodation of these residents together was not compatible with meeting their individual needs.

“In this respect, individual choices could not be effectively promoted and choices around activities and living circumstances were compromised.”

It also found that some of the houses were not suitable to meet the access and mobility needs of some residents in relation to internal doorway dimensions and turning space.

It also stated: “In one unit where a resident presented a possible risk of choking, and had had near miss incidents, there was no evidence of learning from this adverse event, and, for example no suction machine had been made accessible on-site.

“In this respect, there was no evidence of assessment, management and ongoing review of risk.”


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