It is a ‘false economy’ not to invest in home care, says Bradshaw

Alliance Party Health Spokesperson Paula Bradshaw MLA has said not to invest in home care is a ‘false economy’. Ms Bradshaw was speaking after new figures showed that the number of people waiting for a home care package in Northern Ireland has increased by more than 60% since October 2021.  

“To transform our Health Service we need to ensure that fewer people are coming through our hospitals and that the care required for them to return home is put in place swiftly and efficiently. We cannot have blockages in the system; therefore it is a false economy not to invest in home care,” said the Alliance MLA. 

“We know that the majority of people in hospital want to return home as soon as possible, and so care packages are essential for patient well-being. It is about preventative care, reducing our reliance on emergency care and improving the patient experience. Currently, despite our combined health and social care system, there is too much disconnect between Trusts and the Independent Sector, and not enough of a focus on home care from the Department. 

“As a party, we want to prioritise step-down care as part of our domiciliary provision by creating more opportunities for staff and introducing minimum durations for care visits. Improving the conditions that staff are working in means better staff retention and patient care. However, we need investment from a restored Executive to make this happen and reduce these waiting lists.”