Putting the ‘Q’ in Quality Homecare
“Operating in an unregulated marketplace, it is important that homecare providers implement quality assurance systems of the highest standard. Bluebird Care has set an example to other homecare providers on how best practice can prevail in an unregulated marketplace. In fact they will be the first franchised homecare provider in Ireland to have full Q Mark accreditation across all offices.”
Irene Collins, Managing Director of Excellence Ireland Quality Association (EIQA), Ireland’s quality assurance certification body, was speaking at the presentation of the Q Mark to Bluebird Care Cork.
Director Don O’Riordan says, “We are committed to the highest standards in the homecare industry in the absence of regulation. Our customers expect excellence in care and we strive to achieve this each and every day our care teams enter homes and communities.”
Eddie O’Toole, Operations Director with Bluebird Care says, “As the Master Franchisee, we have led out on the EIQA process. We are delighted that 17 of our franchisees have now been awarded the Q Mark with just one remaining office to complete the process. Bluebird Care will become the first franchised homecare company in Ireland to have full Q Mark accreditation.”
The Q Mark is independently assessed by EIQA assessors annually. Irene Collins says this “ensures continuous improvement and the sharing of best practice across the Bluebird Care network.”
Independently-owned in Ireland, but part of the UK franchise model, Bluebird Care implements the quality standards from the UK which operates in a regulated marketplace.
“It is only a matter of time before the homecare market in Ireland is regulated and we actively welcome regulation. But until then we will continue to appraise our own standards against regulation in the UK, through our own internal audit processes and also by external auditors such as EIQA. This is only correct and fair and represents the ethos of our company and our people,” says Brian MacGoey, Managing Director of Bluebird Care nationally.