Tipp TD Says Private and Voluntary Nursing Homes Struggling To Remain Open

Deputy Michael Lowry

Private and voluntary nursing homes are struggling to remain open according to an Independent TD for Tipperary.

Deputy Michael Lowry believes the private sector should have equality with Public Nursing Homes.

The Dáil heard that under the current operation of the Fair Deal Scheme.

Public Nursing Homes receive 62% more per resident per week than a Private Nursing Home.

Pay differentials for staff also caused problems for the private sector according to Deputy Lowry and in addition Public Nursing Homes have specialised needs provided at no cost by the HSE where as private operators must pay for such services.

The Taoiseach confirmed that the  Minister for Older People, Mary Butler, is to meet with the CEO of  National Treatment Purchase Fund,  to discuss the particular issues involved.

Mr Martin said the higher payment to state run homes was justified which Deputy Lowry rejected.

The Taoiseach referred to a Value for Money Review by the Department to identify and analyse any cost differential between Private and Public Nursing Homes.

He said that 9 recommendations have come out of that Report and the HSE is working with the Department of Health and the NTPF to work through those recommendations.

Deputy Lowry welcomed the talks but warned that many private homes may close and the most vulnerable would suffer the most as a consequence.