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Unsustainable nursing home sector gives problems for hospital discharges

Monday October 24, 2022

4th October 2022: Commenting on 600+ people waiting on a hospital bed, Nursing Homes Ireland CEO Tadhg Daly states: “It is of note and unfortunately not of surprise that non-availability of community beds is a contributory cause for the overcrowding besetting our acute hospitals. Nursing home care is absolutely integral to a proper functioning health system, supporting the timely discharge of older people back into communities for rehabilitative, respite or long-stay care. Yet around 500 nursing home beds have been forced to close and taken out of our healthcare system this year alone. Over the past three years, over 40 nursing homes have closed their doors under the watch of Government. This is despite the Department of Health projecting around 12,000 additional nursing home care beds will be required come the end of the decade. You cannot operate a proper functioning healthcare system without a sustainable nursing home sector. Government has not taken the required action in the short-term to support nursing homes within the current cost environment and in the medium term to reform Fair Deal’s structure so a mechanism comes into effect that tallies fees payable with resident care costs. Nursing homes are under immense cost pressure, which impacts upon their operational and staffing capacity. These very considerable challenges require redress if our acute hospitals are to properly utilise the specialised care provided by nursing homes in order to facilitate timely discharges of patients.”


Tadhg Daly is available for further interview. Interviews will be facilitated by Michael McGlynn, NHI Communications and Research Executive, who can be contacted at 087 9082970.