Tuesday, 15 October 2019

Questions (395)

Stephen Donnelly


395. Deputy Stephen Donnelly asked the Minister for Health the details of the €97 million for older people services in 2020; and the full-year cost of such initiatives. [41906/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The Government has made improved access to home support services a priority. We have committed to an additional investment of €52 million in Budget 2020 to bring the total funding for home supports to €487 million in 2020. In 2020 the HSE will deliver over 19.2 million hours of home support, representing a substantial increase of 1 million hours more than this year’s target.

This investment is focused on enabling older people to remain at home and, as appropriate, provision of hours will also be targeted at times of peak demand in Winter 2020, at the beginning and end of the year, to ensure more timely egress from hospital for our older citizens.

While the existing home support service is delivering crucial support to many people across the country, it needs to be improved to better meet the changing needs of our citizens. Dedicated funding has been included within the €52m for the testing of the new statutory home-support scheme in 2020.

In Budget 2020 the Government has also provided an additional €45m investment in the NHSS, increasing its budget to about €1.03bn in 2020. Compared to the 2019 National Service Plan target, this increased investment is projected to support an additional 500 people on average at any one time in long-term residential care in 2020.