Thomas Pringle TD

Pringle calls for action as North West Home Help Hours waiting list nearly triples this year

Deputy Pringle has this week received statistics from the HSE regarding the number of people waiting for Home Help Hours in the North West for each month over the past three years.

Speaking in response to the HSE reply Deputy Pringle says “the statistics make for stark reading as they indicate Home Help Hour waiting list has nearly tripled since January this year. Furthermore, numbers have been steadily increasing year on year for example in December 2016 139 people were waiting, while in October this year 340 are waiting for home help hour approvals.

“At the current rate, numbers are set to increase even further as demand for services increases. However, the crux of the problem remains the lack of HSE funding to meet current and growing demand for Home Help Hours.

“There are vulnerable patients lying in LUH ready to leave but can’t until their home help hours have been approved and they can be safely discharged. Many are waiting months for marginal increases in their home help hours meanwhile their condition worsens as a result. It makes no sense for the patient.

“Proper provision of home help hours will not only reduce crowding in hospitals but also reduce the overall cost on public services as people are cared for in a dignified manner in their own home.

“It’s clear that budget projections over the last three years have not been meeting demand which is now officially out of control as figures nearly tripled this year. This is unsustainable in the long run and serious questions need to be asked about the direction the future of our healthcare is going.

“I’m calling on the Minister to act on this as and provide the necessary funding to address the chronic waiting lists in the North West region” concludes Pringle.

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