Appendix: Our 2009 recommendations

Effectiveness of arrangements to check the standard of rest home services: Follow-up report.

Recommendations for the Ministry of Health

The first five recommendations for the Ministry are based on improving the existing certification arrangements. The sixth recommendation is significant, because we encourage the Ministry to reconsider the effectiveness of the existing certification arrangements.

We recommend that the Ministry of Health:

  1. continue to strengthen how it oversees designated auditing agencies;
  2. cancel the designation of audit agencies that continue to perform poorly;
  3. continue to improve its use of auditing and certification information to identify common themes and trends in the rest home sector, and use that knowledge to identify how and where rest home residents are at greatest risk;
  4. continue to improve how it manages risks in the certification arrangements, identifying the likelihood and severity of those risks and reviewing each year its risk management strategy;
  5. begin to evaluate, by the end of 2010, the effectiveness of third-party accreditation and other work to strengthen the certification process, and share the results with district health boards, rest home operators, and organisations providing advocacy services for older people; and
  6. reconsider the design of the certification arrangements by examining alternatives and evaluating whether the alternatives would be more effective and more reliable.

Recommendations for district health boards

We recommend that:

  1. district health boards work together to ensure that they and their shared service agencies are interpreting the Age Related Residential Care Services Agreement consistently;
  2. district health boards share information relevant to improving the safety and quality of services provided by rest homes quickly and freely with other agencies working in the rest home sector; and
  3. once auditing by designated auditing agencies is effective and reliable, district health boards stop routine contract auditing and use their resources to work with those rest homes where improvements are needed most.
page top