Limerick care home residents “verbally abused and threatened” 

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CONCERNS have been raised about the safety of residents at a Limerick Brothers of Charity centre for people with disabilities after inspectors saw records of residents being physically abused and threatened.

The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) has published the inspection report of its visit to the Casey-1 facility in County Limerick where it found records of residents “slapping, grabbing, scraping, hitting, verbally abusing and threatening other residents living in the house.”

Inspectors found clear reference to one resident appearing nervous around another resident.

A staff member indicated that they did not think some residents living in this house were happy nor compatible to be living together.

The inspectors’ report said that “based on incident records for this house, not all incidents of a safeguarding nature had been notified to HIQA as required.”

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The concerns centred on one of two houses in the centre, while the first house had a “pleasant and relaxed atmosphere,” according to the report.

An inspection of the Sonas Limerick centre in November, also run by the Brothers of Charity Services, found that the rights and general welfare of residents “were impeded by limited staff allocations that were not consistent with the current assessed needs of residents with multiple and complex needs”.

The centre is home to up to 16 intellectually disabled adults, many of whom had challenging behaviours, were non-verbal and “dependant on staff for all activities of daily living”.

The report stated that while residents “appeared happy and were very comfortable in the presence of staff. Staff engagements and interactions were observed to be respectful, gentle and unhurried.

On the day of inspection, one staff member was caring for three residents with “significant vulnerabilities and attention needs”.

“At best, the staff member ensured all three residents were supervised while attempting to clean the house, set up for meal time, attend to service contractors and assist a resident who attended the bathroom every few minutes.”