Longford HSE nursing home paid 114% more to provide care

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A HSE nursing home in Co Longford is being paid 114% more to provide care per person than their private and voluntary counterparts in the county

The HSE nursing home in Co Longford is being paid 114% more to provide care per person than their private and voluntary counterparts in the county, new figures published by the HSE reveal.

The HSE released the fees payable to its nursing homes under the Fair Deal scheme for January 2019 on June 5, following a 15-month delay in publishing the details .

Private and voluntary nursing homes are required to ‘negotiate’ the fees payable to them under the Fair Deal scheme with the NTPF, acting on behalf of the State. However, the fees payable to HSE nursing homes are not subject to negotiation or oversight, with the HSE being the budget-holder and payee.

The published fees inform the average fee payable to the HSE nursing home in Co Longford is €1,956 per person, per week, as of January 2019. The average fee payable per person to the three private and voluntary nursing homes operating within the county for the same month was €912 per person, per week.

This reveals a staggering 114% differential in the average fee payable in respect of residents in the HSE nursing home in County Longford by comparison with private and voluntary counterparts.

Nationally, HSE nursing home fees are paid an average 66% above those payable in respect of residents in private and voluntary nursing homes. Over the 15-month period since the HSE fees were last published in March 2018, the national chasm has increased from an average of 60% to 66%.

Tadhg Daly, Nursing homes Ireland (NHI) CEO, said the publication of fees highlights the discrimination between homes and said it is unacceptable that private and voluntary homes make a fraction of their HSE counterparts.

He said, “Publication by the HSE of its fees highlights the glaring discrimination perpetuated by the State in nursing home care. It is unacceptable private and voluntary nursing homes, which are the lead providers of nursing home care, are forced to provide care for fees that are a fraction of those payable to HSE counterparts.

“Late last year the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee expressed strong concerns regarding the value provided by the HSE in its utilisation of the Fair Deal budget.

“Yet instead of the gross disparity being addressed, State discrimination in the operation of the scheme is growing.” he added.

Mr Daly reiterated the consistent call by Nursing Homes Ireland for the review of the Fair Deal pricing mechanism, being undertaken by the NTPF and now two-years past its deadline for completion (July 2017), to be published with immediate effect.