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Connacht Tribune

HIQA questions quality and safety of care at nursing home

Denise McNamara



Residents with dementia were ordered to sit down, had their cigarettes confiscated and were fed from behind by staff who were found to be ‘disrespectful and inappropriate’ in a litany of adverse findings during an unannounced re-inspection at Corrandulla Nursing Home.

Inspectors from the Health Information and Quality Association (HIQA) visited the home last September following concerns raised to the Office of the Chief Inspector about the capabilities of the management team that were having a direct negative impact on the quality and safety of care.

Inspectors were not satisfied that there were sufficient measures in place to protect the 23 residents living in the home from being harmed or suffering abuse.

“Evidence found during this inspection did substantiate these concerns. Inspectors found that there were inadequate governance and management systems and poor oversight arrangements in place to ensure that the service provided to residents was safe, appropriate, consistent and met regulatory requirements. There continued to be repeated regulatory non-compliances from the previous inspection dated January 2019,” the report stated.

A judgment of “major non-compliance” was found in six of the eight outcomes inspected, which focused on the care and welfare of residents who had dementia. An urgent action plan was issued to the nursing home owner in relation to fire precautions with “immediate and sustained improvements” needed in the other areas to meet the requirements of the Health Act 2007.

The interaction between staff and residents makes for uncomfortable reading.

A resident was told to ‘sit down’ in a tone of voice described as ‘inappropriate’.

Following an altercation between two residents, a staff member asked the resident ‘are you five?’.

One resident had their cigarette supply restricted, even though the person became agitate when they could not smoke.

Residents were assisted with their meals “in an inappropriate, unsafe and disrespectful manner”, the report found.

“Inspectors observed a member of staff assisting a resident with their meal. The resident was lying on their side facing the opposite direction. The resident could not see the person who was feeding them. The only conversation heard by the inspector was the direction ‘open your mouth’.”

During meal times there was minimal interaction by care staff who offered no choice to residents.

“Staff stood in front of residents while assisting them with their meals, rather than sitting next to them. The radio was played at a high volume and was not conducive to a relaxed and social dining experience. Residents were not consulted in relation to what they wished to listen to.”

HIQA criticised the fact there were no activities schedule in place for residents who wished to remain in their bedrooms.

There was a failure to ensure and uphold residents rights’ to privacy and dignity by using CCTV in the communal rooms where residents interacted with their visitors.

Inspectors found staff were not administering medicines in line with guidelines, with doses of prescribed antibiotics omitted and oxygen and fluids given without a valid prescription.

A sample of six residents’ files found that clinical risk assessments had not been completed. Nutritional assessments were calculated using incorrect measurements. One resident who was assessed to be at high risk of developing pressure wounds did not have a skin integrity care plan in place. Another who was reviewed by a dietitian following weight loss did not have the recommendations of the dietitian documented in the nutritional care plan or communicated to the catering team.

Following a meeting, management of the home had agreed to review and update care plans for all residents. They said they had increased staffing levels by 50% which would continue.

Fire training was updated and policy and procedures were reviewed with drill techniques practised on site.

The inspectors found the location of fire equipment was not indicated on the fire floor plans and the fire exit from the unit had moss and no hand rails would could cause a delay in the event of an emergency.

The nursing home was given until the end of December 2019 to address all the issues and will be inspected again to ensure full compliance with the regulations.

Connacht Tribune

SMEs set their sights on Euro expansion




Kevin Moran of IMS Marketing accepting the ‘Excellence in Practice Silver Award’ from the European Foundation for Management Development, with Enterprise Ireland CEO Julie Sinnamon and Nan Gou, Programme Director, ESMT Berlin.

Irish entrepreneurs have the skills, products and services to break down barriers across Europe, according to one Galway-based marketing agency that is helping SMEs enter new markets.

Kevin Moran, Managing Director of IMS Marketing in Galway, said that this creativity and enthusiasm allows Irish entrepreneurs to punch above their weight in new markets.

He was speaking after his IMS Marketing was honoured for its ‘Enter-the-Eurozone’ Programme which has helped 19 SMEs break into Europe.

And he urged all SMEs to continue to set their ambitions on export markets as we emerge from the Covid-19 restrictions and revisit the challenges of Brexit.

Mr Moran said that IMS Marketing, along with its partners, Enterprise Ireland and ESMT Berlin, was delighted to receive the Excellence in Practice Silver Award’ from the European Foundation for Management Development.

“The vision for the ‘Enter the Eurozone’ Programme was to enable progressive Irish SMEs  to enter a new Eurozone market in a strategically led way,” he said.

“Export markets will be more important than ever for Irish companies and jobs as they now face the twin threat of Brexit and a post Covid19 economic recession.”

Accepting the Award’ from the EFMD, Mr Moran said that his company witnessed the strength of the Irish SME sector during the delivery of the award-winning ‘Enter the Eurozone’ programme.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Businesses miss out on restart grant

Stephen Corrigan



Mr. Kenneth Deery. Photo: Andrew Downes, Xposure
CEO of Galway Chamber Kenny Deery

Just one-third of Galway business eligible for the Government’s Restart Grant have actually applied for the scheme which aims to bolster small enterprise as Covid-19 restrictions ease.

It was revealed this week that businesses in Galway City and County have received almost €4.5 million in grant aid under the scheme which offers grants of between €2,000 and €10,000 to commercial rates-liable enterprises.

To qualify for the €250 million scheme, businesses must have an annual turnover of less than €5 million; have 50 or fewer employee; and have a projected loss of revenue of 25% or more.

CEO of Galway Chamber Kenny Deery said there were many Galway businesses that had yet to apply for the grants, despite the fact that they were entitled to do so.

Only around 1,100 of the about 3,000 businesses in the city and county that may be due a pay-out have applied, and confusion over eligibility was contributing to that issue, he explained.

“Some businesses are of the view that they’re not eligible, but they need to realise that even if they only paid €500 or €1,000 in rates in 2019, they could still be eligible for €2,000,” he said.

Those who were in rates arrears were also entitled to the grant, said Mr Deery, adding that as long as a business had a rates liability in 2019, they could apply for the grant.

“The payment have just started being paid out to those who applied about two months ago, so it has been slow in terms of progressing those applications.

“What I would be saying to small businesses is that they would need to sell a lot of cups of coffee or a lot of sandwiches to make €2,000 or €5,000 in profit,” said Mr Deery.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Connacht Tribune

Galway embraces Mass changes

Stephen Corrigan



Parish Priest Fr Hugh Clifford wearing a mask during the distribution of Holy Communion at Mass in St Joseph’s Church, Kinvara, on Saturday evening. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy

Parishioners in Kinvara made a long-awaited return to weekend services on Saturday at St Joseph’s Church, and while it was far from business as usual, mass-goers expressed delight at their return to the church.

Parish Priest Fr Hugh Clifford said while there were necessary changes to what people would be accustomed to, the congregation was understanding of why that was necessary and thankful that the implementation of these measures meant they could return to services after a four-month absence.

As part of Phase 3 of the easing of restrictions, services of up to 50 people were allowed, and to respect physical distancing, that meant two seats in every three were blocked off, said Fr Hugh.

“Households can sit together, but at the moment, we have the limit of 50 people, but we hope that will change in the next phase. We have to advise people who are more vulnerable that they should consider staying at home for the time being,” he explained.

The obligation to attend Mass has been lifted since the outbreak of the Covid-19 crisis, continued Fr Hugh, meaning that people need not worry if they are unable to attend.

For the Eucharist, the Priest and Eucharistic Ministers wear face coverings and use hand sanitiser to ensure there is no cross-contamination, with Communion administered to people in their seats, said Fr Hugh.

See full coverage in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. You can also add the paper to your online grocery delivery; you can purchase a digital edition here, or you can have it delivered at no extra charge by An Post; full details are on this website.

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