Among the key concerns are difficulties providing timely access to acute hospitals as a result of demand exceeding capacity, resulting in overcrowding, long waiting times and delayed release of ambulances. Photograph: Getty Images

Health Service Executive managers have privately warned in recent weeks of significant risks in delivering safe care due to staff shortages and ris(...)

Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton recently said the Government is committed to maintaining core welfare rates, while taking a zero-tolerance approach towards welfare fraud

Members of the public made more than 21,000 anonymous tip-offs of suspected welfare fraud last year.The increase – up from just under 1,000 in the yea(...)

Joint Garda/social welfare checkpoint on Mallow to Cork road. Twenty members of the force joined the national unit earlier this year and are able to use their powers of arrest. Photograph: Michael Mac Sweeney/Provision

It’s shortly after 9am and the benefit fraud team spots two builders working on the roof of a house in a suburban housing estate. “I’ve a funny feelin(...)

Irish Refugee Council chief executive Sue Conlan said moves to improve access to third level for asylum-seeking students were a step in the right direction. Photograph: The Irish Times

More than 1,500 asylum seekers whose refugee applications have been rejected are likely to benefit from the right to reside here under proposals being(...)

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan said  she is determined  asylum-seeking students who have been in the system for five years or more should be treated in the same way as Irish students. File photograph: Jason Lee/Reuters

Young asylum-seekers will be entitled to access third level education in the same way as Irish students under proposals being drawn up by the Governme(...)

The Child and Family Agency  is responsible for inspecting all pre-schools, play groups, crèches and day care services that cater for children aged under six

Senior officials have privately expressed concern that the inspection system for the State’s 4,500 pre-schools is not robust enough to identify servic(...)

 Gerry O’Boyle, of Land League West, at repossessed houses in Hazel Downs Estate, Ballyhaunis, Co Mayo. Photograph: Keith Heneghan

‘You see up there?” says Gerry O’Boyle, on a road outside Kiltimagh, Co Mayo. He points to a jeep blocking a driveway that leads up to a modest far(...)

Most employment lawyers say zero-hours contracts are unlikely to be used to any significant degree in Ireland

While there are growing accusations that employers are using zero- or low-hours contracts to exploit staff, there is no solid data available on how w(...)

Inspectors from the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa) conducted an unannounced inspection at the HSE-run St Peter’s Services in Castlepollard, Co Westmeath last December following concerns over the safety and welfare of residents. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

A HSE-run care unit for people with disabilities was told to cease admissions and transfer residents that it was unable to care for following a highly(...)

A screengrab from secretly recorded footage in Swinford’s Áras Attracta residential care centre shows a worker putting a blanket over a resident’s head after the latter made noise looking for attention. File photograph: RTÉ

The Áras Attracta disability centre in Co Mayo is at the centre of fresh criticism over care standards following an unannounced inspection by the Heal(...)