CORK North West TD, Michael Moynihan has said that the HSE in Cork need to ensure that respite care beds that were transferred from Millstreet Community Hospital to a private facility to allow for refurbishment works are returned as quickly as possible.
“Last year, six respite care beds were moved to allow refurbishment works be completed. A contract with a private operator was agreed to ensure that the existing capacity was not diminished.
“However, it has come to light recently that the contract with the private operator has ended, yet the six beds have not been reopened in Millstreet Community Hospital.
“This is simply not acceptable. Even before this reduction, families were crying out for more capacity in the respite care system.
This reduction will only further exacerbate the stress on families caring for loved ones with disabilities or severe medical issues.
“The HSE must commit to reopening these six beds immediately, and Minister Harris must confirm that these six beds will be returned to the hospital; confirm when they will be returned and with that type of support.
“Yesterday, (Thursday, 26th Feb), Fianna Fáil brought forward legislation to enable the Fair Deal be used to provide home help support to the elderly and allow them be cared for in their own homes.
“This is a common sense proposal, and one which will better utilise resources to provide the best possible care.
“Our bill, added to an increase in the number of respite and nursing home beds, are required to provide the full spectrum of care that is needed by older people and their families,” concluded Moynihan.