Thursday, 13 June 2019

Questions (144)

Willie Penrose


144. Deputy Willie Penrose asked the Minister for Health the reason home help cannot be provided to a person who is 65 years of age and has been diagnosed with advanced dementia which is steadily progressing and which refusal is on the basis that the person is under 65 years of age; if an exception can be made for a person with this medical condition which necessitates ongoing care and particularly some hours of home help; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24680/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

In 2018 the HSE moved to a single funded Home Support Service combining the Home Help service and the HCP scheme into a single service – the Home Support Service for Older People. These services, funded by the HSE, are provided either by directly employed HSE staff or by voluntary and private providers who have formal arrangements with the HSE to deliver the services. The type of support provided includes personal care and, where appropriate, essential household duties relating to the client’s assessed needs. 

The Home Support Service is available to people aged 65 or over who may need support to continue living at home or to return home following a hospital stay. Sometimes exceptions are made for people younger than 65 who may need support, for example, people with early onset dementia.  An applicant’s care needs are assessed by the HSE to determine their requirement for a Home Support Service. The level of support allocated, if any, will have regard to, and support, the assessed needs of the individual, within the limits of the resources available for the service.   Further information on the Home Support Service is available on the HSE’s website.

The HSE’s National Service Plan provides for a target of 17.9 million home support hours to be provided to 53,182 people.  In addition, 235 intensive home care packages will provide 360,000 home support hours for people with complex needs, including people with dementia.