Written answers

Thursday, 5 March 2020

Department of Health

Home Help Service Provision

Photo of Niamh SmythNiamh Smyth (Cavan-Monaghan, Fianna Fail)
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603. To ask the Minister for Health the steps being taken to deal with the ongoing crisis regarding the provision of home help hours; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2889/20]

Photo of Jim DalyJim Daly (Cork South West, Fine Gael)
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Last year the Health Service National Service Plan set a target that over 53,000 people would receive 17.9m home support hours and a further 235 people would receive 360,000 hours through intensive home care packages. This represented a combined target of over 18.2m hours of home support. This year an additional investment of €52 million has been provided for home support services and the 2020 Service Plan sets a target of over 19.2 million hours which is 1 million hours more than the 2019 target.

Enabling people to continue to live independently at home for as long as possible is a long-standing objective of successive governments.  To advance this, my Department is committed to establishing a new statutory scheme for the financing and regulation of home-support services.  Sláintecare commits to the establishment of this scheme by the end of 2021.  The Department of Health is currently engaged in designing the scheme based on continual enhancement of existing service-provision and on good practice internationally in relation to health and social care delivery.  Of the additional investment in home supports this year €7m has been allocated for the testing of the new model of service delivery envisaged as part of the development of the statutory home-support scheme.  My Department is working with the HSE to finalise the plan for the testing phase which is expected to take place throughout 2020.


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