HSE To Investigate Care Homes For Hidden Cameras Following Prime Time Report
FOLLOWING an undercover report by Prime Time which highlighted the harrowing abuse of vulnerable patients at a care home, senior members of the HSE have launched an investigation to make sure there are no more hidden cameras in any other institutions.
Posing as a trainee carer on work experience, an undercover reporter from Prime Time managed to plant hidden cameras in Bungalow 3 of the Áras Attracta care home in Swinford, Co. Mayo.
Viewers of the RTÉ report last night were horrified by scenes in which elderly patients with profound intellectual disabilities were beaten and threatened by abusive staff members, including members of management, in a damning indictment of the state of health care in Ireland today.
Expressing great regret that such abuses had come to light, members of the HSE and its watchdog HIQA have issued a statement promising that care centres across the country would be checked thoroughly for hidden cameras, and stricter measures would be put in place to ensure that new members of staff were not undercover journalists.
“We at the HSE are horrified that what was happening at Áras Attracta have come to light,” said a HSE spokesperson, who invoked his legal right to anonymity in the wake of the abuse of Mary Maloney, Ivy McGinty, and Mary Garvan.
“It just looks so bad for all of us, all the way to the top. And the lads at HIQA, who were supposed to make sure this kind of thing doesn’t happen, they’re all shitting themselves that their jobs are in trouble too”.
“Of course, right now our budget is so tight that we can’t possibly launch an overhaul of the whole system, no matter how badly it’s needed, so instead we’ve instructed all Care Center staff to make sure nobody has planted hidden cameras around the place, and also to keep and eye on any new staff to make sure they’re not journalists or touts”.
The Government remained tight-lipped on the scandal at the moment, although it is believed that a second watchdog committee may be set up after years of debate with no expense spared, to investigate HIQA as they themselves investigate the HSE.
In a further development, staff members who were filmed bullying and degrading the helpless patients in Áras Attracta have been offered new jobs by An Garda Síochána.