A HIQA inspection into Tusla services in Donegal has identified areas for improvement including; significant delays in the completion of preliminary enquiries and initial assessments as well as improvements required to ensure safety plans for children are monitored and reviewed.
The report published today, highlighted a number of positive aspects of the Child and Family Agency in the county but revealed that 16 cases were awaiting allocation for initial assessment, 10 of them high priority.
The report from HIQA says there was a shortage of staff on the Intake and Assessment team which resulted in delays to the service provided to children and their families with significant delays being experienced in the completion of preliminary enquiries and in the commencement of initial assessments.
Notifications to An Garda Síochána were said to not be timely in all cases while safety planning required improvement to ensure that all safety plans were monitored and reviewed.
Managers told inspectors the service did not have sufficient staff to complete screening, preliminary enquiries and initial assessments within the timeframes recommended by Tusla.
Data provided by the area showed that, a week prior to inspection, 16 cases were awaiting allocation for initial assessment on the Intake and Assessment team, 10 high priority cases and six medium priority cases.
Responding to the report, Tusla Area Manager, Donegal, Gerry Hone, said they will continue to make further improvements in the months ahead to ensure that children and families in Donegal continue to receive timely and effective services.