“The home care sector in Ireland is expected to care for an increasing number of older people as a result of the recent waiting list crisis for the Fair Deal Scheme,” says Jonathan Acton, general manager of Home Instead Senior Care in Westmeath.
Waiting times for nursing home funding have doubled over three months, according to new figures from Nursing Homes Ireland. The number of people on the waiting list further increased by more than 500 over three months. This can leave families with a bill of up to €15,000 before any funding is received.
The Fair Deal Scheme was introduced five years ago to provide State financial support for nursing home costs and it is feared the long waiting times could be putting older people’s health and quality of life at risk.
“Priority should be given to dealing with the Fair Deal waiting list crisis and care options for older people in the local community. We need a policy that favours home and community-based care in addition to institutional care. Older people are suffering and missing out on needed care as a result of this waiting list crisis,” says Jonathan Acton of Home Instead Senior Care.
“We are receiving more home care enquiries as a result of the long wait for nursing home care. Older people and their families are struggling to cope and are in need of more help than is currently being provided by the Fair Deal Scheme.”
Tax relief of up to 41 per cent is available on home care fees and home care grants are readily available.
For more information on care options in the local community call Jonathan on (044 ) 9385260 or visit www.homeinstead.ie