NURSING HOME OWNERS will begin to visit every TD, senator and councillor across the country in their own constituencies this week.
Some 360 members of Nursing Homes Ireland (NHI) will push for the politicians to recognise the need for the immediate establishment of a Department of Health-led forum on long-term residential care.
This forum would bring together all of the relevant stakeholders involved in the provision of care for older people. NHI said today that the visits to politicians are part of a national campaign to highlight the “serious issues” facing the provision of private and voluntary nursing home care and the action required to plan ongoing and future long-term care requirements.
The campaign will also involve advertisements, postcards and letters targeted at politicians, key stakeholders and the wider public and aims to set out the challenges in care delivery and the urgent need to address sector requirements to meet the growing demand.
Commenting today, CEO of NHII Tadhg Daly said the department must bring all of those who play a role in the provision of care around the table to map out the future of nursing home care.
“There is an obligation on all stakeholders to ensure that we plan now to meet the challenge of growing and funding the best possible residential care services for our older people,” he said. “Otherwise, we are going to be catapulted into a crisis in care.”
Daly said we “cannot keep dodging the issue” or it will cause major stress to older people and put the livlihoods of over 22,000 employees at risk.
“The number of older people in Ireland is going to rise dramatically in the years ahead,” he said.
“We need real and meaningful action from government now or there will be significant consequences for employment, for our residential care capacity and most importantly, for our ageing population.”