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.

Security Seminar in Tralee: May 2nd


Bluebird Care Kerry/West Cork will host the next ‘Safe at Home’ Security Seminar in conjunction with An Garda Síochána on Thursday 2nd May at 3:00pm in the Grand Hotel, Denny Street, Tralee.

Organised in response to a growing fear among older people and communities about security at home, the events are free and open to the public.  The event will hear from the local Crime Prevention Officer, Sgt Jim Foley who will outline the key steps to take to keep your home secure against intruders. He will also offer advice to people living on their own.

Padraig Barrett from BBM Secure will demonstrate security products and devices which can help keep undesirables out and /or alert you to possible intruders.

Marc deCourcy, Director of Bluebird Care Kerry/West Cork says, “There has been a 60% increase in calls to Senior Line – a freephone line for older people – worried about security at home.  And this is also reflected in our own network as we hear anecdotal evidence from the thousands of older people that we work with on a daily basis.  We are inviting members of local communities, neighbourhood watch schemes, residents associations and other interested groups along.”

Marc says, “There is a responsibility on all of us to take a ‘community approach’ in terms of being aware of older people living around us. “This security seminar is aimed at all members of the community who have an interest in security whether for a neighbour or for themselves. We will have our local Crime Prevention Officer in attendance and a local security consultant offering valuable information on how to guard against burglaries.”

For more information contact Marc deCourcy, Bluebird Care Kerry/West Cork on  (066) 710 4015 or email marcdecourcy@bluebirdcare.ie.

Over the next 12 months a total of 18 seminars will take place in 18 counties around the country attended by local Community Policing members of An Garda Síochána, security consultants and community representatives.


Limerick’s Leaders Pick Up Their Copy of Irish Pensioners Handbook


There was cross party support this week for the 5th Annual Irish Pensioners Handbook which was presented to members of Limerick City Council.

Pictured left to right are Cllr. Kieran O’Hanlon(FF), Cllr. Pat Kennedy (FG), Cllr. Kathleen Leddin (INDP), Daragh Mc Glynn Bluebird Care, Maurice Quinlivan (SF), Tom Short (Lab.)

Pictured left to right are Cllr. Kieran O’Hanlon(FF), Cllr. Pat Kennedy (FG), Cllr. Kathleen Leddin (INDP), Daragh Mc Glynn Bluebird Care, Maurice Quinlivan (SF), Tom Short (Lab.)

General Manager of Bluebird Care Limerick, Daragh McGlynn presented Councillors with their copy along with copies for their respective clinics.

“The handbooks are free and are of great value to carers and older people. With over 200 pages of expert advice on health, wealth, travel, support and a real focus this year on active ageing. Bluebird Care has also commissioned a series of expert articles which are proving popular.

The Handbook has been distributed nationwide to nursing homes, GP surgeries, pharmacies, citizen’s information and active retirement groups and throughout the Bluebird Care network comprising 18 offices in 23 counties.

And it seems that the demand in Limerick is reflected nationwide. Daragh McGlynn says, “We are experiencing overwhelming demand for the Handbook so much so we have ordered another print run.”

The Handbook contains articles from George Hook on Travel, Award winning Chef Gary O’Hanlon on Food for the Soul, Wellesley on Finance, An Garda Síochána on Home Security, Irene Collins of EIQA on Choosing a Homecare Provider, Professor of GP Practice in Trinity College Dublin, Tom O’Dowd on Living with Chronic Illness and Bluebird Care Ireland General Manager and Registered Nurse Lorna Liney on taking medication.

The Handbook also contains a comprehensive county-by-county directory of hospitals, local authorities, support groups, charities and state agencies.

The Handbook can be viewed online and downloaded from http://bluebirdcare.ie/the-irish-pensioners-handbook-2013/

You can also pick up your hard copy from your local Bluebird Care office or call Bluebird Care Limerick on 061-481 208 or email limerick@bluebirdcare.ie.

Who Says There’s No Such Thing as a Free Lunch?


Chef Direct Black Logo

Free Lunch? Yes You Can Have Two!

Do you find cooking difficult or tiresome?  Preparing single meals every day?  Having to do food shopping every week for your main meal?  Now, a new Irish company has a solution.  ChefDirect.ie delivers meals on time, freshly frozen, and directly to you each week.  ChefDirect.ie, set up by two Irish businessmen, bring over 1,500 ready prepared meals directly to their customers each week, including students, business professionals, and retired or elderly people.

ChefDirect.ie  is Ireland’s firs 100%t Irish, ready prepared frozen meal delivery service. With an emphasis on quality assured Irish produce and absolute convenience, owners Paul Kavanagh and Keith McGovern say they are “proud that they are raising the standard of frozen delivered meals in Ireland.”

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Now Bluebird Care has come on board to share their message within the Dublin City and County area where they are operational at the moment.

For all Bluebird Care customers and partners Chef Direct are offering 7 meals for the price of 5 for just €27.50 as an introductory offer which includes free delivery as always.

“Our service is very simple, ChefDirect.ie has a range of ready prepared Irish meals including dishes such as the roast loin of pork & apple sauce”, says Keith McGovern, who along with his partner, Paul Kavanagh, set up the business recently.  “Customers can ring either ring 01 4916262 or go to www.chefdirect.ie to register their details, select their meals and make payment.  Then sit back and relax knowing that their free delivery of meals is on its way.”

The ChefDirect.ie team has designed a range of 21 wholesome meals that use only 100% Irish ingredients, “We are very proud of the fact that we use only 100% Irish produce in all of our meals supporting Irish jobs”, says Paul Kavanagh. They are currently now working on a desert range to add to the already broad menu. Once cooked, all meals are freshly frozen, then delivered to customers door steps and are ready to enjoy in less than 10 minutes from a microwave, or under 30 minutes from an oven without the need to defrost. Costing only €5.50 per meal, with delivery free of charge, this service is light on the pocket.

ChefDirect.ie uses the very best traditional cooking methods to give a hearty Irish flavour to the whole range. Meals contain only the finest and freshest ingredients with meats quality assured by Bord Bia and vegetables purchased from local Irish farmers. Chefdirect.ie guarantees their food to be free of MSG, Hydrogenated Fats and all of their dishes are low in salt.

They’re already selling well within the senior citizen community in the greater Dublin area.  ChefDirect.ie has now also paired up with Dublin City University Students’ Union to launch Ireland’s very first ready prepared meal service for students who are living away from home.

ChefDirect.ie also work with Age Action.

For more information log onto ChefDirect.ie or contact Paul or Keith directly by clicking here.

You can also follow them on facebook and twitter. Click on the links below.



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