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Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: I welcome Mr. Daly, who is here on behalf of Nursing Homes Ireland, and Sage Advocacy. I pay tribute to all those who work in nursing homes, who give so willingly and so well of their time, their effort and their personal commitment.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: That is okay. I just-----

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: Nursing Home Ireland's engagement with the Department began in late February. Is that correct?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: There are 400 items of correspondence between Nursing Homes Ireland and the Department of Health. Is that correct?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: It is. On 17 March, did Mr. Daly thank the Department of Health for regular and ongoing communications in the current unprecedented environment? Did Nursing Homes Ireland assure the Department of its support and state that they would work together? On 18 March, Nursing Homes Ireland wrote to the Department and thanked officials for their continued collaboration, stating that together they...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: On 19 March, Nursing Homes Ireland had a conference call with the Minister. On 20 March, it had a conference call with the Department of Health. On 24 March, Nursing Homes Ireland was looking for financial assistance. On 26 March, the Minister confirmed that to it and, on 29 March, there was a meeting. On 4 April, the temporary financial assistance scheme was launched. Correspondence...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: Of course.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: Okay. Chairman, I-----

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: The conference call I talked about was on 19 March. Did a conference call take place?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: My information is that it did.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: The main point I want to make to Mr. Daly-----

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: Of course.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: So Mr. Daly is saying that this conference call did not take place. Fair enough.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: I believe Nursing Homes Ireland did have a conference call, but my main point is that Mr. Daly's statement, "Key State organisations left the nursing home sector and its residents isolated in those early days", is patently and obviously untrue. My second point relates to Nursing Homes Ireland's directors. It has 12, all of whom are business people. I looked at their accounts and there...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: But Mr. Daly's-----

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: What funds did nursing homes spend in addition to normal funding to get PPE and pay for testing, extra staff and staff accommodation?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: Please. I thank Mr. Daly.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: That was Government money refunded to nursing homes.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: Yes, but my point is-----

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Nursing Homes (26 May 2020)

Fergus O'Dowd: -----that Mr. Daly asserted that nursing homes were not supported. I am saying that the facts point to the opposite.

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