RehabCare, the health and social care division of Rehab, has this week announced that its resource centre in Kilkenny has been awarded a top European quality honour in recognition of the standard of the services provided.
The European Quality in Social Services award – EQUASS Assurance – recognises RehabCare for its quality assurance and quality control in 19 of its resource centre services countrywide. The news brings to 28 the number of RehabCare services which have now gained the distinguished recognition.
EQUASS is a well-recognised European quality award for organisations providing social services. A number of European states, such as Norway, Portugal, Estonia and Slovenia have adopted EQUASS as one of the approved standards for disability services.
EQUASS aims to enhance the personal services sector by engaging service providers on quality matters and by guaranteeing the quality of services throughout Europe.
The award, which is overseen by an international awarding committee, is only given after an extensive process of external verification. As part of the process, people using RehabCare’s services, staff and other stakeholders were interviewed.
Over 100 criteria were reviewed, including participation by service users and families in the development of services, staff training and development, external partnerships, linkages developed with stakeholders, and corporate governance.
‘Can do’ Attitude
In their comments, the auditors paid tribute to staff members’ passion and enthusiasm for their work, a strong “can do” attitude, and a clear focus on improving the quality of life for each person availing of the services.
Pat McPhillips, Regional Manager, RehabCare, commented, “We are delighted to have received EQUASS Assurance for our centres in Kilkenny, an independent European stamp of approval, verifying RehabCare’s commitment to best practice.
Mr McPhillips added, “The award is a tribute to our committed and flexible staff who each day work to enable the people who attend our services to achieve their goals, whatever they may be – moving into their own home, finding a job, learning how to drive, or even writing a book.”
He continued, “It demonstrates that RehabCare is committed to people and to supporting them in living their lives to the full. Models of social care provision are changing and it is essential that people have real choice in the type of service that they access.
“In RehabCare, we pride ourselves on the fact that our services are centred around each person. We sit down with them to discuss what they want to achieve and help them to develop an individual plan, and then tailor the service provided to their own wishes.
“To be a truly person-centred service, you must take into account all of a person’s needs from their living arrangements, to their personal development, to their financial independence. RehabCare is constantly innovating and we will build on this achievement so that we continue to be amongst the leading social care providers in Ireland.”
Jan Spooren, Secretary General of the European Platform for Rehabilitation, which operates the EQUASS quality system under the supervision of its European Awarding Committee, added, “With this multi-site EQUASS certification, RehabCare proves it meets European quality requirements for its local community-based services, guaranteeing person-centered services of a high standard to all those availing of them.”
Laura Keane, Siobhan Powell and Pat McPhillips accepted the award on behalf of RehabCare Kilkenny.