A watchdog has found that a residential centre run by the Alzheimer Society of Ireland had a build-up of grime in washing areas and a strong odour of urine in some toilets even after they had been cleaned.

Health Information and Quality Authority inspectors also found that the Orchard Day and Respite Centre in Blackrock failed in its duty to notify HIQA of a high number of significant and serious incidents early this year.

The centre was caring for 11 older residents last March when HIQA made an unannounced day-long inspection.

Inspectors found the build-up of grime, particularly in the toilets, sluice and laundry rooms, despite the outside cleaning company having cleaned those areas already.

The same mops, buckets and cloths were being used in both toilet and bedroom areas.

A perfumed air-freshener was reported to have been used on all equipment and furnishings despite the absence of any disinfectant, antibacterial or antimicrobial properties in the spray.

In all, six out of the nine headings inspected were scored "Major Noncompliant" and only one substantially compliant.

The watchdog found that the Orchard Day and Respite Centre in Dublin was over-reliant on agency and inexperienced nursing staff.

It found that management systems or sufficient resources to ensure the delivery of an effective, appropriate and safe level of care was not found and that this had been a recurrent finding of previous inspections.

It says there was a lack of adequate clinical governance which resulted in poor outcomes for residents.

It criticises risk management specifically related to fire safety and staffing levels and says the skill mix was not adequate to meet residents' needs during the inspection.

follow-up unannounced inspection last June found very significant improvements at the centre with four out of the nine standards inspected registering a score of "Moderately Non-Compliant". No major breaches of regulations were recorded on that occasion.

The Alzheimer Society of Ireland this afternoon said it "welcomes the robust and independent monitoring that the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) provides. We take its findings extremely seriously.

"Recently, we acted on findings of the Compliance Monitoring Inspection Report following an inspection of the Orchard Day Care and Respite Centre in Blackrock, Co Dublin by HIQA.

"Consequently, a follow-up inspection by HIQA found that good progress had been made on implementing the required improvements.

"The ASI is committed to providing an environment where people are understood, cared for and supported. We can assure clients and their families that we are fully focused on delivering person-centred, dementia-specific care to our clients at all times."