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Written Answers - National Carer’s Strategy

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 754 No. 3

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 454.  Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath  asked the Minister for Health Information on James Reilly Zoom on James Reilly  the progress that has been made in implementing the national carer’s strategy as outlined in the programme for Government; the timeframe for same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6214/12]

[521]

 534.  Deputy Kevin Humphreys Information on Kevin Humphreys Zoom on Kevin Humphreys  asked the Minister for Health Information on James Reilly Zoom on James Reilly  the progress that has been made on implementing the national carer’s strategy as contained in the programme for Government; if he has had any discussion with the Department for Social Protection regarding the development of such a strategy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6747/12]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Kathleen Lynch): Information on Kathleen Lynch Zoom on Kathleen Lynch I propose to take Questions Nos. 454 and 534 together.

The development of a National Carers Strategy ‘to support carers and to address issues of concern’ is a key commitment in the current Programme for Government. While issues relating to carers span a number of different Departments, the Taoiseach has allocated responsibility for co-ordination of the preparation of the Strategy to me with the support of the Minister for Social Protection. The Strategy will address the needs of informal and family carers. It will be conceptual and visionary and will establish a number of high-level principles, goals and objectives and a road map to implementation.

The State already faces challenges in maintaining existing levels of services from within limited resources and the Strategy is being developed in that context. The Strategy will not be an operational plan but will set the strategic direction for future services and supports for carers in recognition of their role and contribution to maintaining children, adults and older people with physical or mental health difficulties in their own homes. Work on developing the Strategy is on-going, and it is hoped that a draft will be completed by end March 2012. Discussions have taken place between officials of the Departments of Health and Social Protection in relation to the Strategy.


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