Waterford TD says figures reveal urgent need for increase to home care
Waterford TD and Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Older People, Mary Butler TD, has said that the latest figures on delayed discharges make it crystal clear that every one of the promised extra 800,000 hours of home help must be delivered in 2019.
Fianna Fáil has received figures from the HSE which show that there were 599 delayed discharges in our hospitals in June alone and that 18,662 bed days were lost as a result.
Deputy Butler explained, “Delayed discharges are discharges that did not take place even though a patient was well enough to be discharged from the hospital by their doctor. In many cases, this is due to a lack of home help hours, home care packages or community-based respite support in nursing homes or rehabilitative centres."
“Recently I pointed out that the HSE was not meeting its target of providing home help to 53,000 people. The actual number receiving of home care is 52,382 - 618 fewer than the HSE commitment. This deficit is not too far removed from the number of delayed discharges in our hospitals."
“Similarly, if the levels of home help and support that we saw in the first five months of this year continue then we will come in some 400,000 hours short of what was promised by the HSE this year."
“It is essential that home help targets are met. Older people want to be in their own homes and not to be stuck in hospitals which are already facing serious overcrowding pressures,” she concluded.