Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Questions (1538)

Robert Troy


1538. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Health the reason no county has a minimum standard of supports and services in place for dementia patients and their carers; and if funding for extra support services for same will be approved in budget 2020. [33333/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The aim of the National Dementia Strategy, which was published in December 2014 and is being implemented by the National Dementia Office, is to improve care, services and supports for people with dementia.

The HSE currently provides approximately €9 million per annum for intensive home care packages, including €7.9 million for dementia-specific packages. Since the packages were introduced at the end of 2014, 443 dementia-specific intensive homecare packages have been delivered, with 201 active at the end of March 2019. 

A total of €426 million has been allocated for home support services in 2019, which also benefit people with dementia. Over 17.9 million home support hours will be delivered to over 53,000 people this year.

The HSE provides in the region of €12 million in annual funding to a range of organisations who deliver dementia-specific respite, home care, day care, cognitive stimulation therapy, social clubs and supports for family carers around the country.    The HSE also provides €400,000 per annum to support the Dementia Adviser Service, which spans 12 counties, and is operated by the Alzheimer Society of Ireland. This funding supports 7 of the 9 dementia adviser posts delivering the service.

Last week, I launched a €1 million fund for community and voluntary groups to continue to support older people to stay well and remain connected with their local community. Approximately €250,000 of this funding will be dedicated to dementia related initiatives. 

The level of funding available for the Department of Health in 2020 and the quantum of services to be provided by the HSE, including for any measures to enhance dementia services, will be considered as part of the national Estimates and budgetary process and National Service Planning.