The Institute of Public Health (IPH) will contribute to the development of new regulations governing providers of home support services in Ireland when it produces a report for the Department of Health later this year.
Today, Thursday, 16 June, the Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People, Mary Butler, launched a public consultation on Draft Regulations for Providers of Home Support Services. The draft regulations will apply to public, private, and not-for-profit providers of home support services.
The public consultation, which is open until 28 July, will inform the further development of legislation governing providers of home support services.
Over the coming months, the Institute will support this programme of work by analysing all submissions to the public consultation and producing a report for the Department of Health later in the year.
The draft regulations will set out the minimum requirements that providers of home support services must meet in order to obtain a license to operate.
The licensing system will be to ensure that home support services are of consistently high quality as well as to safeguard service-users.
The requirement to obtain a licence falls centrally on providers of home support services whose employees may encompass home helps, personal assistants and community-based healthcare support assistants, and whose services encompass the provision of assistance with personal hygiene, mobility, social engagement, and essential household tasks.
The Department of Health is seeking the views of a wide range of stakeholders, including service providers, service users, home support workers and family carers, on the proposed regulations.
Launching the public consultation process, Minister Butler said: “The government is committed to the introduction of a statutory home support scheme. I am pleased to launch this public consultation on the draft regulations for providers of home support services. This is a significant step towards delivering safer, more equitable and higher quality home support services. I look forward to hearing peoples’ views on the draft regulations.”
The Department of Health will publish a consultation report later this year.