Thomas Pringle said he has his doubts whether the HSE are competent to address failures of management that Hiqa identified in a report on disability services.
The deputy was responding to a report from the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa), published today, on its review of the effectiveness of governance and management and safeguarding arrangements in designated HSE-operated centres for people with disabilities in Donegal.
Deputy Pringle said: “The report speaks highly of staff in each of the centres and how they try to provide proper care to residents.
“At the same time, the report shows clearly that there is a failure at all levels of management, from county level right up to national level. That needs to be addressed and sorted out.
“I have my doubts whether the HSE are competent to do that. I know that Minister Anne Rabbitte has tried to force the HSE to act and they constantly have refused,” he said.
In January, Hiqa carried out inspections at 18 HSE-run centres in Donegal arising from concerns about the management of safeguarding concerns by the HSE in the Donegal area. In its review, Hiqa found that most residents were living in pleasant, homely environments and the centres were being managed by experienced and knowledgeable people.
However, the chief inspector has required the HSE to address its poor oversight and governance arrangements at local, regional and national levels. The HSE was also required to improve its assurance mechanisms at regional and national levels to make sure that safeguarding arrangements to protect residents from the risk of harm are effective.
Deputy Pringle said: “The HSE need to be reminded that they work for the Irish people, not that they are doing us a favour in any way.”