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Home Instead Voices Concern Over Dementia Care in Hospitals

Jan 28, 2014

Home Instead Senior Care is concerned that the first national audit of the quality of dementia care in Ireland has revealed that hospitals here are not equipped to deal with it.

It affects 25% of in-patients at any one time and costs the state €21m each year.

But figures published today show that 91% of hospital wards have no access to psychology services, while over a third of wards have unfilled healthcare assistant vacancies.

Dr Suzanne Timmons, Consultant Geriatrician at UCC-Mercy Hospital carried out the research. She claims the low standard of dementia care in hospitals continues to affect the overall well-being of patients.

"For a person with dementia, it must be much more challenging and much more frightening," she said.

"If you're used to being at home with someone you recognise, and you're used to your own routine, the acute hospital must be a very frightening place - and this is why everyone who works in a hospital needs to improve their practices."

Ed Murphy, CEO of Home Instead Senior Care said, “ Home Instead Senior Care understands the distress those living with a dementia and their families face.  In fact, many of the older people cared for by Home Instead have dementia.” 

“We’ve come to understand it’s a condition that can take its toll on the person and on families, affecting their quality of life. The results of this audit are worrying as the care and dignity of the person should always be at the core of dementia care.  We advocate for quality of life at home for as long as possible, and for people with a dementia being in familiar surroundings really supports the quality of their  care journey. If hospital settings are not achieving the same level of quality care this is something that must be addressed as a matter of urgency.”

Home Instead Senior Care offer FREE Dementia Education Workshops for families and communities who are involved in the care of someone with Alzheimer’s or other dementia.  Research from the Home Instead Senior Care network throughout the world reveals that families have two significant challenges when caring for their loved ones

  1. Keeping their loved one’s mind engaged
  2. Managing behaviours that can include repetition and aggression.


Through our CARE programme Home Instead Senior Care will provide family and community members with techniques needed to help them best manage behaviours, encourage engagement,  keep their loved ones safe and look after themselves in a caring role. 


If you are concerned and would like to attend a workshop please contact your local Home Instead office to find out more or log on to  and register online.