Putting the ‘Q’ in Quality Homecare

Irene Collins Managing Director of EIQA pictured presenting the Q Mark to Eddie O’Toole Operations Director, Bluebird Care. Six Bluebird Care franchises were awarded the EIQA National Q Mark for quality standards in homecare. Photo Conor Ó’Mearáin.

“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 providers on how best practice can prevail in an unregulated marketplace.”

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 six Bluebird Care Ireland offices.
The Q mark was awarded to Bluebird Care Limerick, Galway, Dublin North, Dublin North East, Dublin Southeast and Wicklow and Sligo/Mayo.
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 six franchises have been awarded the Q Mark. Our remaining franchises are currently undergoing the EIQA audit process with awards due in 2013.”
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 Managing Director.