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Attacks on Service users and Staff at Residential Care Centres sparks HSE takeover

Posted in [Blog Personal Injury Litigation ] on Thursday, July 14th, 2016

Cantillons Solicitors were saddened to learn of the inadequate and unsafe services provided in three farm-based residential care centres for people with Autism, reported in the media this week. The news came following the publication of inspection reports by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA). A number of inspections were carried out by HIQA at Cluain Farm, Co. Meath, Dunfirth Farm, Co Kildare and Sarshill House in Co Wexford over an 18 month period and identified serious and significant shortcomings in terms of the standard of care provided to service users. Improvements that had been recommended were not implemented, which ultimately led to the decision to cancel the registration of the three centres.  Some of the major non-compliances identified were; Inadequate safeguarding measures to ensure residents were protected from assault and felt safe living in the centre. Ongoing risks to residents where some of whom were not being properly managed or responded to.  Poor governance and oversight leading to negative outcome for residents. Inadequate staff training and poor management of staffing resources.  Staff were not trained in the administration of certain medication, in particular, epileptic medication and adrenaline.  An overall failure to comply with regulatory requirements. HIQA also found that there had been multiple incidents of physical attacks on other residents, staff members and visitors, sometimes leading to injury. In most cases, these incidents were not reported to HIQA and no systems were put in place to prevent these incidents reoccurring.  It must be so upsetting for the families to learn that residents were not appropriately cared for. Overall, in terms of these three facilities, it is disheartening and upsetting to read these stories and it is hoped that the necessary improvements will be implemented expeditiously to ensure a proper standard of care that service users deserve and a safe place of work for staff members. Families should be made aware that there are legal remedies available for the residents who have suffered as a result of the matters identified in the HIQA reports. If you would like more information, contact us at Cantillons Solicitors at +353 (0)21 -4275673 or to talk to our personal injury solicitors.  * In contentious business, a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage of any award or settlement. Share on Social

Amy Connolly



Amy joined Cantillons in 2013 having graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Civil Law Degree from University College Cork. She successfully completed her Law Society FE-1 Examinations and received an award for achieving the highest mark in the Law of Tort exam in the 2015 sittings. Thereafter she completed the Law Society Professional Practice Courses at Blackhall Place, Dublin.

Amy spent two years in the Medical Negligence Department working on various cases involving birth injuries, cancer misdiagnosis, surgical errors and fatal claims.

Amy is currently working in the General Litigation Department and advises clients in relation to all aspects of civil litigation; to include personal injury claims, accidents at work, road traffic accidents, public liability claims, farming accidents, claims against local authorities and claims against the HSE. She has successfully represented clients before the District Court, Circuit Court, High Court, and Court of Appeal and has been involved in a number of high profile cases.

Amy is also a member of the Residential Tenancies Board Panel of Solicitors, enforcing RTB Determination Orders in the District Court.


Honours Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Law
Completed Law Society Professional Practice Courses at Blackhall Place, Dublin

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