Clare Fianna Fáil TD Cathal Crowe has welcomed the recommendations of a Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) report into Cahercalla Community Hospital, which he believes will improve the level of care provided at the facility.
Last month, Cahercalla Community Hospital and Hospice confirmed that it had entered into a Clinical Services Management Agreement with Mowlam Healthcare to provide clinical and managerial oversight at Cahercalla.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the hospital said the agreement will provide Cahercalla with strong governance, leadership and supervision of our residential care services and optimise our systems and practices.
“Mowlam will ensure that Cahercalla is compliant with HIQA standards and regulations, with particular emphasis on person centred care and will ensure that Cahercalla continues to protect the safety and welfare of all residents which is our primary focus and responsibility.
Cahercalla remains an independent voluntary residential care facility and maintains its charitable status. This agreement with Mowlam Healthcare will develop a symbiotic relationship between Cahercalla and Mowlam which will deliver high quality management expertise and enhance the reputation of Cahercalla within the local community and throughout County Clare,” according to the statement.
A number of non-compliances have been identified in the report which has just been published, and steps have already been taken to address some of the issues that arose.
“Over the past number of weeks, I’ve been in contact with HIQA personally on this matter and I was aware there were a number of inspections taking place at the facility and that this report was being compiled. This report found a number of shortcomings, some of which I understand have already been addressed, but the remainder of those will be addressed by a new management team contracted by HSE,” Deputy Crowe said.
“What I’m particularly glad to hear is that from a patient point of view, nothing will change in that there will be no closure or winding down of this facility, which has offered a vital healthcare service for generations – that will continue as always.
From a workers’ perspective there will also be a continuation in that there will be no job losses; there are changes in how the facility is being managed and an external company now leading up management, as appointed by the HSE,” he said.
“I have every faith and belief that they will address any final aspects identified in inspection report that are yet to be acted on but I also have full confidence that every step has been and will be taken to implement the recommendations.
It’s important to note that HIQA is a regulatory body to ensure that the care offered in such facilities is at the highest standards and I think that the outcomes here should all be seen in positive light. Most especially, this is about improving things for the patients and I know that is at the heart of what everybody involved in the running of Cahercalla Community Hospital from the ground up,” Mr Crowe added.