The 'HPSS (Quality, Improvement and Regulation) (NI) Order 2003' allows for the regulation of a range of health and social care services, and for the development of minimum standards for these services.


DoH is developing standards for regulated services across the statutory, voluntary and private sectors.

These standards focus on the safety, dignity, well being and quality of life of service users. They are designed to address unacceptable variations in the standards of treatment, care and services and to raise the quality of services. They will be used by the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) alongside the requirements of regulations, in making decisions on regulations of establishments and agencies.

They will also assist organisations in assessing the quality of their service provision and will provide greater transparency for the public on the standard of care and treatment they can expect to receive.

Nine sets of standards have now been published for:

  • residential care homes
  • nursing agencies
  • domiciliary care agencies
  • residential family centres
  • day care settings
  • childminding and day care for children under 12
  • childrens homes
  • independent healthcare establishments
  • revised nursing homes

If you require further information about care standards, please contact the Standards and Guidelines Quality Unit.


Back to top