World Stroke Day
60 times more spent on care home costs than rehab for stroke survivors
- Better services could prolong lives, reduce disability and save taxpayers’ money
World Stroke Day (29 Oct) Press release
On the eve of World Stroke Day, which takes place on Saturday October 29th, the Irish Heart Foundation (IHF) said that greater investment in community rehabilitation services for the country’s estimated 50,000 stroke survivors could save the State millions of euro a year in addition to delivering substantial reductions in death and disability from the disease.
Said IHF Head of Advocacy, Chris Macey: “Up to sixty times more taxpayer’s money is spent on nursing home care for stroke survivors than the community rehabilitation services that could prevent many having to be institutionalised.
“IHF research shows that less than €7 million a year is spent on vital community rehabilitation services countrywide each year compared to up to €414 million on nursing home care – which makes up almost 80% of the direct costs of stroke to the Irish economy.
“This does not make sense. In effect we are waiting until after the time that we can help stroke survivors most before we start spending money on them.
“On the other hand, as little as €140 per person a year on average is going towards community rehabilitation for stroke survivors – which is barely enough to pay for a couple of physiotherapy sessions for people with often complex physical and psychological supports many people need as they try to rebuild their lives.
“The Irish Heart Foundation believes that by putting more money into community rehabilitation, the huge cost of nursing home care to the taxpayer could be reduced significantly in addition to massive quality of life gains for large numbers of stroke survivors, who are currently being forced to endure unnecessarily prolonged or severe disability because of inadequate services.”
Media queries to Caroline Cullen, Communications Manager, Irish Heart Foundation
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