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Home and Community Care Ireland (HCCI) welcomes Sláintecare action plan but warns that collaboration is needed to recruit additional home carers required.

Dublin, 12th May 2021: HCCI, the representative body for private home care providers, has welcomed the publication of the Sláintecare action plan but warns that a comprehensive workforce review is needed to recruit the additional home carers needed under the plan.

Joseph Musgrave, CEO, HCCI said, “It is good news that the Government has approved the Sláintecare Implementation Strategy & Action Plan for the next three years. As part of the plan, the home care capacity review has set a target 36.5 million HSE funded home care hours by end of 2031. However, this 50% increase in hours from the 2021 baseline will require a significant increase in home care staff. This is in addition to the 7,000+ community acute staff also required as part of the Sláintecare plan. To avoid a pitched battle over staff between the public and private sectors, which is not in anybody’s interest, we are reiterating our call on the Government to undertake a social care workforce review immediately so that we can address this significant recruitment challenge.

We are ready and willing to work in partnership with the HSE and Department of Health to find solutions. For example, allowing carers to be trained and upskilled while in employment and changing visa requirements to allow non-EEA citizens to work.

The future is home care – it is what older, more vulnerable people and their families want and it enhances the fabric of our local communities. The pandemic has highlighted the safety and resiliency of home care; peak Covid-19 infections among HCCI members’ client base of 20,000 have never gone beyond 1%. We want more people to enjoy the safety and comfort of home with the support of a home carer but in order to make this a reality we need to act now to solve the recruitment challenge.”

 

 

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