Issued: 02 April 2020 12:32

COVID-19 Guidance is now available for staff and carers who provide services to people with disabilities (Click for More).

This guidance will ensure that staff and carers are fully aware of the steps they need to take during the outbreak. 

  • We have provided easy read versions of essential information for people with disabilities.  It’s important that we support people to understand what is happening, and in so doing reduce their anxiety or fear.
  • All of the materials are available to download here

The HSE convened a group made up of representatives of the voluntary sector disability service providers to develop disability specific guidance and resources.  These are in line with nationally approved guidance issued by the HSE and Health Protection Surveillance Centre.  This webpage will serve as a portal for all disability-specific guidance and resources to be used during the COVID-19 pandemic.

We will also include links to other relevant websites that host important and useful guidance and resources.  We will continue to add new resources and guidance over the coming days and weeks.  Where necessary, guidance has been reviewed by clinical leads and approved by the HSE’s Vulnerable Person’s Group, convened to lead the response to the needs of vulnerable people during this pandemic.

The guidance includes Contingency Planning for Home Support Managers/Health Care Support Assistants/ Personal Assistants during the Mitigation Phase which supports home care or PA staff working in a person’s own home.

There are two guidance documents for staff working in residential services:  one for Nurse-Led Disability Services and one for Social Care led Disability Services.

There are  short Guidance documents on issues such as:

  • A practical checklist to avoid stressors for service users.
  • A desensitisation programme is also included that can be used in the coming weeks to prevent people with disabilities from becoming distressed when  being asked to undertake a test, or for that matter who become distressed if their care worker has to wear a mask.
  • There are easy read versions of the guidance documents and programmes that can be downloaded and used by all disability services.

There is a guidance document which outlines considerations for alternative ways of supporting people at a time when the regular services are not available called Alternative Models of Care (non-residential).

We recognise that many people have been working on developing local materials; this new guidance will eliminate the need to duplicate work.  If there are additional changes introduced by the National Public Health Emergency Team we will update the guidance centrally.

Contact National Disabilities Quality Improvement Office, Disability Services.

Need information and advice on COVID-19? Go to