IFA Farm Family and Social Affairs Chairwoman Margaret Healy called on the Minister for Health James Reilly to reopen the Nursing Home Support Scheme – Fair Deal immediately. She said the Minister must act quickly to minimise the stress caused to elderly people by the suspension of the scheme.
Margaret Healy said that she had been speaking with many elderly farmers and farm families that are very concerned that the Fair Deal scheme had been suspended without warning. She asked the Minister to honour commitments outlined in the Government for National Recovery 2011- 2016 to provide additional funding for the care of older people.
“The actions of the Government to suspend the scheme are very worrying and show little regard for the vulnerable elderly members of our society. No one should be excluded from essential nursing home care because the HSE did not plan for the increased demand for the scheme.”
The Fair Deal scheme was introduced in 2009 as a financial support scheme for people who need long-term nursing home care. Under the scheme an individual’s contribution is calculated in accordance with the principle of ability to pay. Since it was introduced over 20,000 people have applied for the scheme and more than 16,000 of these were approved for funding