HSE begins consultation on Laois public nursing homes

The HSE has finally begun consultaitions on the possible closure of community nursing homes in Laois and other midland counties.

The HSE has finally begun consultaitions on the possible closure of community nursing homes in Laois and other midland counties.

Nearly six months after being forced into consultaiton the the HSE Midlands has today published a ‘Older Person Services – Consultation and Information Document’.

The executive says the document sets out the public consultation process regarding the potential closure of two community nursing units, Abbeyleix Community Nursing Unit (“Abbeyleix”) and St. Brigids Hospital, Shaen (“Shaen”).

According to a statemtn the document includes information on current services for older persons in the Midlands and information on the future direction of a new more responsive service model.

The executive says consultation process is guided by the HSE National policy ‘Consultation Policy Document in relation to the Potential Closure of Public Long Stay Unit.’

The HSE in Dublin Mid-Leinster said it was committed to revitalising and strengthening the regions community support services and long term care to and to increasing our focus on a client-centred service delivery. Joseph Ruane is the HSE’s Area Manager for the Midlands.

“It is about challenging the current service models that are in existence and putting forward proposals that will benefit the greatest number of elderly and being responsive to individual needs.

“This may involve changing current models of care (e.g. reducing number of public long stay beds) to newer more responsive models (e.g. reablement model of homecare in an individual’s home) with the respective transferring of resources,” he said.

The HSE said this consultation document will provide the HSE with an opportunity to discuss the “challenges and potential solutions” in the current long term care and community support services systems.

“We would urge all those interested parties to participate in this consultative process as the sharing of experiences and ideas are important and the feedback received will ensure that those people who most need our support get it,” he said.

Consultation will take place over a 12 weeks and will include face to face contact with residents/clients and other interested parties explaining the reasons why the HSE is contemplating making a decision to recommend to the Minister for Health that a unit should be closed. The consultation will include residents, families, staff, stakeholders, unions and the public. Printed copies are available on request or at ww.hse.ie/eng/services/Publications/services/Older/Older_Person_Services_Consultation_and_Information_Document.pdf