Home Instead Senior Care, Ireland’s largest home care provider, welcomes the funding announcement for home care packages made yesterday by the Minister responsible for Older People, Kathleen Lynch. The announcement coincides with the publication of a review in to the Fair Deal Scheme.
The Fair Deal is the name given to the State’s Nursing Home Support Scheme which effectively finances long term care for most older people. Historically, the scheme has subsidised nursing home care and neglected to include other community care packages including home help and home care.
“The only effective solution for older people is a Fair Deal Scheme that includes home care provision and gives older people care options to suit their ageing needs. More information is needed from the HSE in terms of how home care packages for older people will be funded and included in the scheme. For a long term solution, home help and home care should also be a care option under the Fair Deal Scheme”, says Ed Murphy, Founder and CEO of Home Instead Senior Care in Ireland.
In recent years there has been a 44% increase in the number of older people in nursing homes categorised as ‘low dependency’ by the HSE. Furthermore, an internal HSE survey found 40% of people who availed of the Fair Deal Scheme were not assessed for their suitability for a home care package.
“This highlights the lack of care options being given to older people, and the lack of supports that enable older people to live independently at home. It is in the best interest of older people to have a policy that favours home and community-based care in addition to institutional care. we encourage the Minister in her efforts to bolster the role of home care and home help as an important care option for Ireland’s ageing population”, continues Ed Murphy of Home Instead Senior Care.
Home Instead Senior Care has experienced an approximately 25% increase in home care service enquiries since January. “We are receiving more home care enquiries than ever before – people want to live independently and age at home. Older people are most definitely struggling to cope and have been in need of more than what has been provided by the Fair Deal Scheme to date. We look forward to further updates from Minister Lynch and a growing awareness of home care among Ireland’s older population”.
Home care is a personalised type of care. A professional caregiver delivers one-on-one care that matches the needs of the older person. Tax relief of up to 40% is available on home care fees.