This Government currently provides funding of over €1.5 billion to the Disability Services Programme through the HSE’s National Service Plan for 2013, and is committed to protecting frontline services for people with disabilities to the greatest possible extent. An additional €4 million demographic funding has been allocated to the HSE in 2013 to address the needs of young people with disabilities who are due to leave school this year.
In 2013 the HSE is seeking to maximise the provision of services within available resources and to maintaining a consistent level to that provided in 2012, by providing the following specialist disability services:
- residential services to over 9,000 people with a disability;
- day services to over 22,000 people with intellectual and physical disabilities;
- respite residential support for over 7,500 people with intellectual and physical disabilities;
- 1.68m hours of Personal Assistant / Home Support Hours.
In order to mitigate the impact on frontline services of the reduction in employment numbers which must be achieved this year, the priority is to reform how health services are delivered in order to ensure a more productive and cost effective health system. Therefore, the HSE is using the provisions of the Public Service Agreement to bring about greater flexibilities in work practices and rosters, redeployment and other changes to achieve more efficient delivery of services. Staff reductions will be pursued throughout 2013 through natural turnover (retirements and resignations) and such other targeted measures or initiatives as may be determined by Government in relation to the health sector or the wider public service.
In relation to the specific queries raised by the Deputy, as these are service issues they have been referred to the HSE for direct reply.