IFA President Tim Cullinan said there has to be greater transparency in the cost of nursing home fees, but this must not impact the Government’s commitment to introducing a three-year cap on productive farm assets.
He said delays in introducing the recommendations from the 2015 Review of the Nursing Homes Support Scheme, A Fair Deal, were at the heart of both these issues.
“The review recommended greater transparency of the pricing mechanism and that the scheme must ensure value for money,” said Mr. Cullinan.
The same report recognised IFA’s position that farm assets should be treated differently as they were income generating assets that typically passed to the next generation as a primary income source.
The Programme for Government commits to enacting legislation implementing the revised Nursing Homes Support Scheme arrangements for farmers and business owners.
IFA Farm Family & Social Affairs Chair Caroline Farrell said that the individual stories of distress and waiting helplessly as the viability of family farms is threatened due to the delays cannot be under estimated.
“It is already a very difficult time for families, when a loved one has to go into a nursing home without the added worries of the farm being lost to pay for the cost of care”.