The Minister indicated that three hundred hospital beds per day are normally unavailable because of a lack of care packages but also that the Department is now funding patients to stay in ‘step down’ facilities for more than six weeks. That is why in the Southern Trust over 500 people are waiting on a Care Package.
Mr Clarke said,
“The idea of step-down facilities is to free up hospital beds and enable a care package to be put in place. The fact that the Department is now funding places in step down facilities for more than six weeks demonstrates the crisis that is in domiciliary care. Why on earth is it taking six weeks to organise a care package?
It is time for major change in domiciliary care. The workforce needs properly resourced to do the job and the Department needs to put in place package which makes the job attractive.”