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Gaps in home help services in Fermanagh area raised in Assembly

21 February, 2012 - by Phil Flanagan

Fermanagh & South Tyrone MLA Phil Flanagan has said there are huge gaps in home help provision across rural Fermanagh and not only is it affecting peoples quality of life but it is also having a massive impact on the Health and Social Care budget.

The Sinn Féin MLA is bringing an adjournment debate in the Assembly today to highlight the situation.

Phil Flanagan said:

“There is not adequate home help provision in County Fermanagh and one of the main reasons behind this is the poor terms and conditions for the carers.

“This is having a negative impact on the public’s quality of life, especially in the most rural areas. The knock on effect is that people are being kept in hospital longer than is necessary and this is obviously an added cost to the Health Care budget.

“A recent example I have worked on was when one local woman had to spend nearly nine months in hospital after being paralysed by a fall. She could have been home a lot earlier had the home help been available, but it wasn’t and therefore she spent that time in a hospital against her wishes.

"I am raising this adjournment debate to make sure the Health Minister is aware of the situation and to press him to resolve it and ensure that sufficient provision it as soon as possible.

"We cannot allow this disgraceful situation to continue and financial pressures are not an argument here. The Health Department is actually spending more as a result of these gaps than it would be if sufficient investment were to be made."

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