EMBARGOED - MONDAY 13th DECEMBER 2010 - 22:30
Following tonight's Prime Time Investigates programme, Home Care Association (HCA) would wish to point
out that none of its members were the subject of the programme and that the Association operates
a programme of external audits for its members to help ensure high standards.
Ed Murphy, President of the HCA said that we have been calling for statutory regulation for many years and agree
with the central conclusion of the programme that this is badly needed. All HCA members have underwent an audit
which was independently assessed by a specialist UK Inspector to ensure the highest standards are being are being
adhered to. Although our association regulates our members, such a system will never be as rigorous as statutory
regulation with independent HIQA monitoring
It is very important to recognise that 90% of care provision is provided by the HSE themselves and voluntary
organisations funded by the HSE. None of this care is inspected or audited independently at present.
However, whilst recognising the current position, the HCA welcomes the fact that the HSE is in the process of
carrying out a home care tender designed to ensure compliance with a set of minimum standards for people who
receive HSE Home Care Packages. This however only covers 4,500 older people and not 54,000 people who receive
home help or the thousands of people who employ private carers.
It was important to remember that 90% of elder abuse occurs within the community, so it is vital that we have
adequate protection for older people being cared for at home and HIQA regulation can accomplish this. Murphy
stated that independent inspections and care standards for professional home carers should be introduced to
help protect against abuse and mistreatment.
About the HCA
Representing 28 members across Ireland, Home Care Assiciation (HCA) is the trade association representing
professional home care providers in Ireland, who directly employ, train, Garda vet, supervise and insure
caregivers so as to provide a quality service to clients.