Cork ‘not resourced’ to deal with dementia

Cork ‘not resourced’ to deal with dementia
Graphic from The Alzheimer Society of Ireland on the level of services required to support those in Cork suffering from dementia.

CORK is not sufficiently resourced to provide a basic minimum standard of care for people with dementia, according to the Alzheimer’s Society of Ireland (ASI).

The ASI is calling on the Government to invest €12 million towards community supports for people with dementia which has been outlined in the pre-budget submission ‘Dementia Support Across Ireland – Building Communities of Care’.

The mid-term review of the National Dementia Strategy (NDS), which was launched in May 2018, acknowledges that people with dementia and their families are still dealing with inadequate services and supports, and states that additional funding is required.

According to a dementia services mapping project carried out by the ASI and the HSE’s National Dementia Office (NDO), not only does access to community dementia-specific services across Ireland vary depending on where you live but no county in Ireland has an acceptable level of dementia support.

There are serious gaps in the services provided in Cork, according to the ASI.

None of the following services are provided according to the mapping project carried out by ASI & HSE: dementia counselling service, dementia in-home respite and people with dementia support groups.

In Cork, to reach a basic minimum standard of care for people living with dementia, the ASI said funding must also be put in place to enhance or create services such as Alzheimer’s cafés, dementia carer support groups, dementia cognitive therapies, dementia family carer programmes and dementia social clubs.

The ASI is calling for the Government to invest €7.415 million for a minimum standard of community services in each county; €2.31 million to roll out a dementia adviser service across Ireland; €2.24 million to provide key workers in every HSE Local Health Office for the coordinated care of each person with dementia; and €852,000 for dementia inclusive community coordinators across Ireland.

There are an estimated 55,000 people with dementia in Ireland.

“In Ireland today, people with dementia, their carers and families are still dealing with inadequate supports,” said Former Minister for Justice, Nora Owen, whose husband suffers from dementia.

“New mapping of dementia-specific services shows people living in Ireland do not have equal access to a basic minimum standard of community services.

“Budget 2019 could change this,” she added.

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