SDLP MLA for Mid Ulster, Patsy McGlone,
is seeking an urgent meeting with the Northern Health Trust Chief Executive,
Dr Tony Stevens, on the continued delays in implementing approved home
health care packages. The Mid Ulster MLA requested the meeting in response
to increasing number of constituents reporting unacceptable delays in
implementing approved domiciliary care packages. Mr McGlone has also sought
updated figures from the Department of Health on delays across all Health
and Social Care Trusts.
Mr McGlone said, “My office has been
inundated with queries from constituents about unacceptable delays in the
provision of home care packages over recent months.
“As a result of those concerns, I have
requested an urgent meeting with the Northern Trust Chief Executive, Dr Tony
Stevens, to ensure that these delays are addressed as a priority.
“In many cases the failure to
implement approved domiciliary care packages will mean delayed discharge
from hospital, which means that beds are not being freed up for new
patients. In other cases the delays in providing appropriate domiciliary
care will result in the need for further hospital care that could have been
“In the absence of either an Executive
or an agreed budget, whatever proposals the outgoing Health Minster comes up
with to deal with waiting lists will remain paper proposals only. It will be
up to the Trusts to address these continued delays in home care provision.
“This is not a new problem. In
December 2015 departmental figures showed that 229 patients across Northern
Ireland had been waiting over 2 months for approved domiciliary care
packages to be implemented. The Northern Trust was then the worst performing
area with 160 patients waiting more than 2 months for an approved care
package to be implemented.
“The latest figures I have requested
from the department will show what progress, if any, has been made on this
issue in the last two years.”
Notes to editors:
Assembly Written Question
To ask the Minister for Health, in
relation to domiciliary care packages that have been approved by Health and
Social Care Trusts and are due to be implemented, to detail how many
packages have been outstanding for (i) up to two weeks; (ii) up to four
weeks; (iii) up to two months; and (iv) more than two months since being
approved, broken down by Health and Social Care Trust.