HCCI welcomes tax relief boost to help

elderly stay in their homes

Increased relief first step to address 782 delayed discharges nationwide costing €625,600 per night

Thursday 20th November 2014: Home and Community Care Ireland (HCCI) has welcomed Finance Minister Michael Noonan's announcement that tax relief to help the elderly stay in their own homes is to be increased from €50,000 to €75,000 from the New Year.


The move is part of Government steps to address high levels of delayed discharges nationally with recent figures from the HSE revealing that 782 patients around the country remain in hospital despite being cleared to leave by a senior doctor.


Almost 90% of what are known as, 'bed blockers,' are elderly patients over 65 who cannot leave as alternative arrangements have not been put in place.


The HSE have calculated that the nightly cost, per hospital bed, costs between €800-900. Using these figures, a conservative estimate of the cost is €625,600 per night - the equivalent of around 29,790 hours of home care services.


Commencing on the Minister's announcement, Michael Harty, HCCI Chairman said Homecare is generally people's first choice for care in their later years, and this measure will help to make it more affordable especially in cases where more complex care is needed.


Mr Harty added In these times of reduced funding and ever increasing demands on the elder care budget, the HCCI feel that homecare has an important role to play in making sure we are getting the maximum benefit from our health care budget and decreasing the pressures on the Fair Deal Scheme and hospital overcrowding. Measures such as this are also important in taking steps of making sure that budgets are spent in accordance with patient wishes.


ENDS


For more information, please contact:
Edel Bach: 086 045 3821 / edel.bach@humebrophy.com
Delayed Discharge figures from HSE Delayed Discharges, National Report, 28th October 2014


About Home and Community Care Ireland (HCCI):


Home and Community Care Ireland (HCCI) was set up in June 2012 following a merger of the Home Care Association and the Professional Institute of Care Providers. It is the representative body for private home care organisations in Ireland with the primary objective of promoting the highest professional standards of care in the home, in a cost-effective manner.


At present the HCCI has 25 member companies providing employment to almost 8,000 staff and caring for over 6,000 people across every county in Ireland. Home care is a care alternative that is preferred by the majority of care recipients, contributes to improved quality of life and is a cost-effective treatment option. Our members include operators across the country providing 78,000 hours of care each week at the frontline of health service provision.


For further information: www.hcci.ie