Press Release

Minister for Older People highlights Important Information for Nursing Home Residents


The Minister for Older People, Áine Brady, T.D, has urged nursing home residents and their families, to inform themselves about nursing home services and supports, particularly the new Nursing Homes Support Scheme.

“The year 2009 was a time of fundamental change in the nursing home sector. In addition to the new Quality Standards and system of independent inspection for all nursing homes, the Government also introduced a new scheme of financial support for nursing home care, A Fair Deal. It is important that people who are in or entering nursing home care are aware of these changes and of what they may mean for them.

I am delighted that the Fair Deal scheme is up and running, and that more and more people are being supported under the scheme. However, as with any new scheme, I am anxious that people are provided with quality information so that they understand what it is about and what it encompasses.”

The Minister highlighted the information published by the Department of Health and Children and the HSE on the introduction of the new scheme. In particular, she pointed to the Information Sheet on Payment of Fees. This short leaflet sets out the services covered by the Fair Deal scheme, the position with regard to eligibility for other schemes and residents’ rights with regard to their contract of care and payment of fees.

She was particularly concerned to emphasise that support paid under the Fair Deal scheme covers:

  • nursing and personal care,
  • basic aids and appliances,
  • bed and board, and
  • laundry services.

In addition, the HSE provides incontinence wear free of charge to all nursing homes, public and private. Also, anyone who has a medical card continues to hold this card and the benefits that go with it.

Where a person wishes to avail of other services, such as hairdressing or daily newspapers, they may have to pay an additional fee. However, this should be agreed between the person and the nursing home, and set out in the individual’s contract of care.

The Minister encouraged people to check out the dedicated webpage for Fair Deal for Information Booklets, FAQs, Guidance on the Capacity Assessment and other Fair Deal Resources. Alternatively, people can contact their local HSE Nursing Home Support Office.