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NHI Urgent Call for Action

Nursing Homes Ireland (NHI), the national representative body for the private and voluntary nursing home sector, recently published a significant research analysis titled "Challenges for Nursing Homes in the Provision of Older Persons Care." The report, commissioned by NHI and conducted by PwC, sheds light on the pressing issues faced by nursing homes in Ireland and illustrates the magnitude of the threat to the sustainability of current and future nursing home provision, highlighting the extent of the cost pressures present for nursing homes. Within the report, we see a series of short- and medium-term recommendations put forward by PwC.

Read the Full Report Here 

According to the report, the nursing home sector is grappling with substantial threats that endanger its viability. One alarming trend is the closure of over 30 nursing homes in the past three years, resulting in the loss of 915 beds. The report identifies several factors contributing to this challenging situation, including the complexity of residents' needs, escalating costs related to infection control, inflation, and industry-wide staffing shortages.

The financial strain faced by private nursing homes is also a matter of concern. The report reveals that one in three private nursing homes operated at a loss last year, signifying a troubling shift from the profitable state they were in just six years ago. Operational costs have risen 36% since 2017, and the cost of developing a bed has surged by 47%, the study states, but income from the State for residents on the Fair Deal scheme has increased only marginally. The business case for new and existing nursing homes is no longer commercially viable.

Bedroom in a nursing home

Nursing home owners also point out that due to changing demographics and increased use of home support services, staff are now caring for residents that have more complex needs, including being older, higher dependency levels and a greater requirement for care hours. These changing circumstances place additional strain on nursing home staff, exacerbating the challenges faced by the sector.

Tadhg Daly, CEO of NHI, declares that the nursing home sector is currently, "in a state of crisis and contraction", characterised by the closure of numerous homes and beds, without being replaced. While the impact has been predominantly felt by smaller operators in rural areas, medium-sized and larger operators are also at risk unless immediate intervention takes place. Daly emphasises the need for urgent action to address these issues and prevent further deterioration.

For more information, read the full report below.

Challenges for Nursing Homes in the Provision of Older Persons Care Report

Posted on 02 June 2023 by Laura Mulchrone
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Laura Mulchrone

01 567 3123
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