Tuesday, 13 July 2021
Department of Health
Home Care Packages
52. To ask the Minister for Health the number of homecare support hours being provided in counties Longford and Westmeath in 2021; the way this compares to 2020; the number of persons currently waiting for homecare in each county; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37728/21]
60. To ask the Minister for Health the number of homecare support hours being provided in counties Sligo, Leitrim and Donegal in 2021; the way this compares to 2020; the number of persons currently waiting for homecare in each county; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37733/21]
I propose to take Questions Nos. 52, 53 and 60 together.
Home supports enable older people to remain in their own homes and communities, as well as facilitating timely discharge from hospital. Since 2018 the funding for home help and standard home care packages has operated as a single home support service.
We have made improved access to home support services a priority. In 2021 an additional investment of €150 million has been made available to fund over 24.2 million hours of home support. This is 5 million hours more than the 2020 target and represents an unprecedented level of investment and a substantial increase in service provision.
Due to the effects of the cyberattack the most recent complete data available represents the period to the end of March 2021. As of this date there were 54,112 people in receipt of home support and almost 4.7 million hours had been delivered across the country.
In Longford and Westmeath, the HSE had provided almost 130,000 hours which was about 25,000 more hours compared to March 2020. There were 1,317 people receiving the service and there was nobody waiting for approval of funding for a new or additional service.
In Mayo over 160,000 hours were provided which represented an increase of about 15,800 hours compared to the same period in 2020. There were 2,070 people in receipt of home support hours and there were 50 people waiting for approval of funding for new or additional service.
In Sligo, Leitrim and Donegal the HSE had provided almost 338,000 hours which represented an increase of 48,000 hours compared with March 2020. At the time there were 3,111 people in receipt of these hours and 131 people were waiting for funding approval.
Enabling people with care-needs to continue to live independently at home for as long as possible is a priority for the Government. To advance this, the Government is committed to establishing a new, statutory scheme for the financing and regulation of home-support services, which the Department of Health is currently developing.