Press Release

Minister Varadkar welcomes the announcement of the disbursement of €2.96m from the Dormant Accounts Fund

Minister Varadkar welcomes the announcement of the disbursement of €2.96m from the Dormant Accounts Fund to support a wide range of marginalised service users and community based models of support for people with dementia.

The Minister for Health, Leo Varadkar today (4th May, 2016) welcomed the announcement from the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government that a new round of funding is being made available under the Dormant Accounts Fund. The funding to the Department of Health will be used to support a wide range of marginalised service users and community based supports for people with dementia.

The following three health-related projects have been approved.

Mobile Health Screening Unit

The objective of this measure is to provide an accessible, targeted screening and primary care service to a wide range of marginalised service users in settings such as hostels, prisons, Direct Provision Centres and Refugee Reception and Orientation Centres. The measure will benefit a diverse cohort of marginalised groups including those affected by homelessness, migrants and asylum seekers, ROMA, Travellers, those who suffer from addiction and refugees. These groups are at higher risk than the general population of serious medical conditions, communicable diseases and psychiatric illnesses and/or substance use disorders. The measure is expected to contribute to improved health outcomes for the target groups.

The funding allocation for this measure is €1,460,000.

Intercultural Health Project for Refugees

This measure will support the delivery of a range of health services to meet the emerging needs of the new residents of the Emergency Reception and Orientation Centres (EROCs) established in Clonea and Monasterevin. The main objectives of the programme, which will be run over two years, are to identify the health needs of residents of the EROCs, provide health service information and access routes, deliver intercultural awareness training to health and social care staff and to provide a mental health support service as part of an outreach/satellite service. The services provided will include screening and public health services, interpreting services, GP services and out of hours, dental services, mental health including post-traumatic stress and transport to hospital appointments.

The funding allocation for this measure is €450,000.

Community Based Supports for People with Dementia

This measure will support pilot projects providing new models of care to support people with dementia to continue living well in their own homes and communities. The projects provide individualised supports, emergency and planned respite, carer support, assistive technology, inclusive community-based activities and information and awareness training. The measure will also provide for the roll out of a successful assistive technology show house concept to other Community Healthcare Organisations.

People with dementia and their carers are often both socially and economically disadvantaged and this allocation will allow people with dementia to continue to live well at home; it will inform the public about dementia, reduce the stigma associated with the disease, and provide people and communities with the know how to become dementia friendly. It will help carers to sustain their caring role and promote and facilitate the use of assistive technologies to support people with dementia and their carers.

The funding allocation for this measure is €1,050,000.

The allocations were welcomed by the Minister Varadkar and Minister Lynch. Minister Varadkar said: “I welcome this latest allocation of funding from the Dormant Accounts Fund. The funding will be used to assist those marginalised service users in our society who are at higher risk than the general population of serious medical conditions, communicable diseases and psychiatric illnesses and/or substance use disorders. These measures are expected to contribute to improved health outcomes for the target groups”.

Commenting on the funding for dementia, Minister Lynch added: “The funding allocated for dementia supports will allow people with dementia to continue to live in and actively participate in their own communities. This is in line with the National Dementia Strategy.”

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