More needs to be done for dementia supports — Chambers

Cllr Lisa Chambers.

Cllr Lisa Chambers.

Fianna Fáil General Election candidate in Mayo Cllr Lisa Chambers says this Government has failed to deliver on sufficient supports for dementia care over the past five years. Despite committing to a new dementia strategy, very little has been done to support families and carers of people with dementia.

Cllr Chambers commented: “Dementia is a deeply distressing condition not only for those suffering from it, but also for their families and friends. There are hundreds of families across Mayo who are impacted by the cruel condition, with an estimated 50,000 family carers looking after someone with dementia across the country. Many of them feel as if they have been abandoned by this Government. Home help hours have been slashed since 2010 – Mayo alone saw a reduction of almost 9,000 hours over the five year period."

She continued: “I’ve met with carers in Mayo who feel isolated in their own homes. They are fulfilling a vital role in the care of their loved ones but are not getting the necessary supports. In many instances they feel taken for granted by the State.

“Fianna Fáil welcomed the publication of the National Dementia Strategy in 2014 and we remain committed to its implementation, however it could have gone much further. We would like to see the provision of intensive home care packages with the provision of an additional 190 packages specifically for dementia as well as better supports for people with early onset dementia. The establishment of a national dementia adviser service would ensure that everyone has access to a timely diagnosis and is assigned a dementia adviser to provide follow-up support.

The first term county councillor, who will be contesting her second general election, continued: “Dementia rates are expected to rise and I have real concerns that the Government is not prepared to cope with the increased demand on services over the coming years. The proposed mid-term review of the National Dementia Strategy should be utilised to develop a revised dementia plan that will ensure that everyone living with dementia has the supports and resources to manage the condition.”

 

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