Concerns in Cork at cuts to home helps hours; supports vital for many 

Concerns in Cork at cuts to home helps hours; supports vital for many 

Some families are concerned that having multiple people checking in on an elderly person who is supposed to be cocooning could cause more issues,

CORK families are worried about increased risks to elderly loved ones due to cuts in home help support coming in tomorrow.

Due to the challenges posed by the Covid-19 crisis those who can “cope temporarily without the home support service” will have to do so. 

Affected service users have been notified by letter, and have been assured that their service “will be reinstated once the Covid-19 crisis is resolved”.

Sinn Féin TD for Cork North Central Thomas Gould has said people affected and their families understand the situation, but some aren’t sure how to proceed.

“People were upset because they’re stopping from Wednesday,” he said.

“Trying to put a plan in place to take care of their family members is an issue. One family I spoke to said they have no problem taking up the burden to release people, but the problem is they’re not sure if they’d be making the situation worse.”

The family are concerned that having multiple people checking in on an elderly person who is supposed to be cocooning could cause more issues, but if family members stay away it could also cause problems.

Mr Gould said families would have preferred more time to prepare, adding: “The issue they have is that it’s such short notice.”

The northside TD also fears some elderly people may not have families to look after them. 

“If anyone [elderly] gets injured or gets sick, or doesn’t take their tablets, you can end up in a situation where people are going to hospital that don’t need to go to hospital.”

He said he understands the need for staff redeployment, but stressed that the home support service is vital and will be missed by many people.

A spokesperson for Cork Kerry Community Healthcare said: “We acknowledge that this is not the level of service which we usually provide, but we stress again that this a temporary measure which will be reversed once the Covid-19 crisis passes.

“Our local managers will be available so that if anyone feels their own circumstances and needs change during the temporary pause, we can review their situation and level of care again.

“Anyone heavily reliant on the home support service will not be affected by this action, in fact it will allow us to continue the service for those who need it most.”

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