Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Questions (603)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

603. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Health the degree to which he will continue to support public sector nursing homes and hospitals caring for older persons in view of the high quality of service available to the public sector, notwithstanding competition from the private sector; if he will ensure that the application of standards by the Health Information and Quality Authority is not used as a means to increase the costs in the public sector over the private sector; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [15426/14]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

Government policy is to support older people to live in dignity and independence in their own homes and communities for as long as possible. Where this is not feasible, the health service supports access to appropriate quality long-term residential care, including the provision of financial assistance under the Nursing Homes Support Scheme. We are committed to the provision of a quality public nursing home service underpinned by a regulatory system of registration and inspection.

The National Quality Standards for Residential Care Settings for Older People in Ireland provide the framework for Health Information and Quality Authority to assess whether residential services are providing high quality, safe and effective services and supports to residents. All nursing homes are subject to the same core standards and regulations in relation to quality and safety in order to ensure the well-being of their residents.