HCCI calls on Oireachtas Health Committee to end

premature admissions to nursing homes

26 September 2013

Home and Community Care Ireland today presented its pre-budget submission to the Health Committee and called for an end to the ring-fencing of one type of elder care over another -a root cause of premature admission to nursing homes in Ireland.

Michael Harty, HCCI Chairman questioned the wisdom of ring fencing €1bn of the total €1.4bn elder care budget for residential care under the Fair Deal Scheme and pointed to Irish nursing home residency rates which are some 30% higher than the European average.

Mr Harty also highlighted potential savings of up to €69M in 2014 if funds were instead allocated on the basis of patient need and wishes through more cost effective home care packages for low to medium dependency needs.

Mr Harty said: It makes no sense for the Government to incentivise more expensive nursing home care through ring-fenced Fair Deal Scheme Funding, when the evidence shows that the majority of people want to stay in their own homes for as long as possible. Minister Reilly stated recently in the Dail that 16% of persons in residential homes are deemed low dependency with a further 29% medium dependency. The fact is that the vast majority of these people would be suitable and amenable to care in their own homes at a greatly reduced cost.

For more information or a copy of the pre-budget submission, please contact:

Edel Bach: 086 045 3821 / edel.bach@humebrophy.com

About Home and Community Care Ireland (HCCI):

Home and Community Care Ireland (HCCI) was set up in June 2012 following a merger of the Home Care Association and the Professional Institute of Care Providers. It is the representative body for private home care organisations in Ireland with the primary objective of promoting the highest professional standards of care in the home, in a cost-effective manner.

At present the HCCI has 25 member companies providing employment to almost 8,000 staff and caring for over 6,000 people across every county in Ireland. Home care is a care alternative that is preferred by the majority of care recipients, contributes to improved quality of life and is a cost-effective treatment option. Our members include operators across the country providing 78,000 hours of care each week at the frontline of health service provision.

For further information: www.hcci.ie