Home Adaptation Grants System Needs to be Streamlined

Housing Adaptations sdcc

TD for Dublin South West Seán Crowe has called on the Government to overhaul and streamline access to Home Adaption Grant system, saying that the lack of funding and resulting delays are having a detrimental impact on many local residents’ quality of life. Crowe raised the issue at a meeting of Oireachtas Heath Committee which he chairs. Teachta Crowe said: “Home adaptation grants can make a monumental improvement on many local residents’ quality of life. They allow people to return from hospital or care facilities into their home environment that has been fitted out for their new medical and physical needs. This is of huge benefit to their healing and recovery and allows those in recovery or with an impairment to continue, although with some constraints, an independent lifestyle.
 
“For certain medical conditions, they may need a ramp or simply a couple of doors widened, but this can, in my experience, often take weeks or even months under current system. Others may need more extensive work like a wetroom or even extensions built and this can take years to process and get actual permission. “This can lead to situations where people are potentially only receiving very necessary upgrades and alterations to their homes when they are in an end of life scenario, having spent years trying to get supports. “Many Councils do not have the necessary supports or the funding to provide for the adaptation of the communities they serve. All too often, they are forced to make people wait or inform them of the awful news that the money simply isn’t there.
 
“The lack of simple house adaptations also means that many people are stuck in hospital or other care home facilities because their homes simply are not suitable for their particular needs. This places further pressure on bed space in a health system where beds are at a premium. “Covid-19 has complicated matters further. So much necessary work was not done due to the public health restrictions, so many local authorities are desperately playing catch up in a system that was already struggling to begin with. “The government must step in and massively invest in providing easier access to home adaptation grants for qualifying people with medical needs. The current system requires three quotes from separate building contractors is cumbersome, lengthy and fit for purpose.
 
“It makes no sense from a human or financial perspective and from the point of view of lessening the pressure on the health service in not allowing as many people as possible to live at home in conditions that allows them access into their home and basics like a toilet or a shower for washing.“There is no conceivable reason except pure red tape why residents are continued to be denied the necessary supports they so desperately need. We need to streamline the current system, make it fit for purpose and bring the home adaption process into a modern 21st Century that works for all of our citizens who are aging or have an impairment.” 

Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of www.newsgroup.ie with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at info@newsgroup.ie.

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