Minding a Vulnerable Population With ‘Q’uality Care


Q Mark for 10 Bluebird Care Office 

By 2021 Ireland will have 800,000 people over the age of 65. With a growing population and increasing demands on health care, Bluebird Care says it sees the home care sector growing rapidly. However, they say quality certified care must be a minimum requirement to ensure the sector adds value to the health system while adding years to those being cared for.

Irene Collins of Excellence Ireland Quality Association (EIQA) says, “Just as you would check the credentials of any new person who comes into your home, it is vital that you check the accreditation of your homecare provider.”

She was speaking at the recent presentation of five further Q Mark Certifications to Bluebird Care.

The Q Mark has been developed as an industry-recognised standard for the home care sector and with 10 offices awarded the Q Mark to date the remaining eight Bluebird Care offices are currently going through the process.

“We expect Bluebird Care to be the very first franchised home care company in Ireland to achieve the Q Mark in all offices.  That is why the National Q Mark is delighted to recommend Bluebird Care, who have chosen to enter into the rigorous Q Mark programme of standards rather than simply work to the lower standards that often exist in this currently unregulated area of health care,” says Irene Collins.

Eddie O’Toole, Operations Director with Bluebird Care says, “We’ve had our origins in the UK where home care is largely privatised but equally highly regulated. Operating in Ireland since 2007 we have led out on the standardisation of care using a combination of our own quality processes but also adopting those laid down by EIQA.

“To date 10 of our 18 offices have been award the Q Mark of Quality with the remaining eight currently going through the process.  As outlined by Irene Collins, Managing Director of EIQA, we are likely to be the first franchised home care company in Ireland to have all our offices quality certified.  Meanwhile, our Galway office has also achieved the ISO 9001:2008 standard demonstrating an underlying ethos of excellence.”

Q-QC categoryA

The Q Mark framework for Home Care providers is comprised of five principal elements:

1. Leadership Commitment:
This means that the homecare provider who carries the Q Mark has an entire management team that believe in providing the highest standard of quality care to you.

2. Engaged Employees:
Everyone who works for a Q Mark certified homecare service believes in delivering the best standard of care, whilst respecting your privacy and treating you with dignity.

3. Excellent Business Systems and Processes: 100% of a Q Mark certified homecare service’s support systems; processes and procedures are monitored for best practice, 100% of the time.

4. Customer Experience:
The Q Mark puts you first. That’s why your experience is paramount, and your quality of life and care is always the priority.

5. Positive Results:
Every Q Mark certified homecare provider continuously strives to do better in their quest to improve on best practice and provide a higher quality of life for each and every person they care for.