HSE’s nursing homes dearer than private

Some HSE nursing homes in Galway are charging anything from 25% to 80% more per week than privately run homes.

Nursing homes run by the State – under the umbrella of the HSE – are now considerably more expensive than their counterparts in the private nursing home sector.

Comparisons in County Galway show that some HSE nursing homes are charging anything from 25% to 80% more per week than privately run homes.

While it was considered at one time that residency in public nursing homes provided a cheaper option than the private sector, this has now been turned on its head as a result of the Fair Deal scheme.

The Fair Deal scheme has put all nursing homes on the same footing as regards how a person’s stay in residential care will be financed. All means, income and property are assessed before a decision is made on what a potential resident in a nursing home will have to pay.

After a decision is arrived at, it is then up to the person – or his/her relatives – to decide on what is the most appropriate nursing home, in any particular case.

However, there may be very significant financial implications to that decision and the comparisons show that the public sector nursing homes are generally significantly more expensive.

Inquiries this week – and perusal of the State registry websites – showed State-run nursing homes in County Galway to be in the €1,100 to €1,350 per week range. In comparative terms, privately run nursing homes are generally in the €750 to €900 category per week.

In the public category, Áras Mhuire in Tuam is priced at €1,342 according to the Galway Older Peoples Services Office; St Brendan’s in Loughrea is priced at €1,216 per week; St Ann’s in Clifden is at €1,333 and a State website recently put Aras Mhic Dara in Carraroe at €1,125.

These figures are hundreds of euro higher than the weekly charge for a person in most privately run nursing homes.

Read more in this week’s Connacht Tribune