There was an increase in non-compliance at designated centres for people with disabilities last year, according to a report by the Health Information and Quality Authority.
The overview report on inspections and regulations at centres in 2022 states that the continued impact of Covid-19 restrictions limited service providers' direct oversight.
The report said providers found it "challenging" to identify and resolve issues as they arose and to re-establish effective arrangements for the monitoring of their services according to HIQA.
Over 1,300 disability services were inspected in 2022 and levels of non-compliance increased compared to 2021.
This impacted on the quality of care and support residents received as well as their lived experiences according to HIQA.
As public health restrictions eased during the second half of 2022, there was an improvement in the management of centres by providers, enabling residents to reengage in social and community activities according to the report.
Regulatory action was taken in relation to 171 (58.5%) "pieces of the information" received by HIQA regarding centres.
One piece of unsolicited information contained serious and unreported adult safeguarding concerns and was referred to the HSE National Safeguarding Office in line with HIQA’s Adult Safeguarding Policy.
While 2022 showed an improvement in compliance levels in congregated settings, non-compliance continued to be higher than in community-based settings according to Deputy Chief Inspector of Social Services (Disability) Finbarr Colfer.
"This means that people with disabilities living in congregated settings are at higher risk of receiving a poorer quality support that does not uphold their rights", he said.