Older people forced into nursing homes

Lack of home care and community supports
  • Deborah Condon

A charity that supports older people to remain living at home has said that it is not surprised by a new report, which found that older people are being forced into nursing homes due to a lack of home care and other community supports.

The report by the Citizens Information Board, which has been presented to the Department of Health, revealed that some older people cannot secure the supports they need to stay in their own homes.

However, according to Sean Moynihan, chief executive of the charity, ALONE, these findings ‘come as no surprise'.

"Older people need access to home care and support to age in the community. If we are going to respond to the positive that is an ageing population, then we need to invest in services in our communities," he commented.

He noted that adapting homes for older people is one method of support, however Government investment in this area has fallen despite the fact that Ireland's ageing population is growing by 25,000 people every year.

"We know our hospitals can't cope and community services are the cheaper and best option," Mr Moynihan insisted.

In response to this issue, ALONE is aiming to increase its services and the number of its volunteers from 700 to 7,000.

"ALONE is asking the Government to prioritise the right to home care and the housing grants scheme and to allocate additional funding to meet the needs of our rapidly growing and ageing population. We want to work with all parties to make this happen," Mr Moynihan added.

ALONE provides support to over 1,000 older people every week in Ireland. For more information on the charity, call (01) 679 1032 or click here


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