Nursing Homes Ireland statement re St Joseph’s ShankhillWednesday November 6, 2019
6th November 2019: News that St Joseph’s Shankhill faces closure due to chronic underfunding presents a damning inditement upon the State and the National Treatment Purchase Fund. St Joseph’s, a voluntary provider, has capacity to provide high-dependency 24/7 care to 62 people and provides 120 places per week in its daycare service.
Tadhg Daly, NHI CEO states: “HIQA, the regulator, has reported nursing homes are closing their doors due to non-recognition of the reality of costs incurred to provide nursing home care. But this warning has not been heeded. Private and voluntary nursing homes have been closing the doors for successive years. They’ve encountered an organ of the State that has slammed the door shut on fees payable recognising the reality of costs incurred to provide high dependency care on a round-the-clock basis. The NTPF operate off geographic and historic fee differentials to reach their determinations. These are completely ill-fit for purpose. In utilising such, they are adopting a take-it-or leave it approach to nursing home providers and turning a blind eye to the legitimacy of costs incurred. They act minus accountability. There is no independent appeals mechanism for a nursing home that cannot agree a fee under Fair Deal with the NTPF. Failure to agree a fee effectively means closure for the nursing home. It represents gross irresponsibility by the State that it leaves the NTPF to its own, unaccountable devices. Why does it continue to shy away from introduction of an independent appeals mechanism? Introduction of such could provide nursing homes with recourse to revert to an independent third-party that could assess the reality of costs incurred and what the fee entailed should be. As the State allows the NTPF to act beyond reproach, it continues to sit on the review of the Fair Deal pricing mechanism, now two years past its scheduled date for completion. Publication of the review must become an immediate priority to facilitate discussion regarding the funding of nursing home care. The State cannot continue to absolve itself of the escalating crisis within nursing home care in Ireland.”
Tadhg Daly is available for further comment. Contact Michael McGlynn, NHI Communications & Research Executive at 01 4699806 or 087 9082970.