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Varadkar welcomes additional funds to tackle ED Overcrowding

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar welcomed the approval for further measures to reduce the problem of delayed discharges and overcrowded.

It was announced that €44 million will be allocated to the Nursing Homes Support Scheme, which will provide an additional 1,600 places and reduce the waiting time for approved applicants from 11 weeks now to the previous norm of 4 week for the rest of the year;

Also €30 million will cover the cost of additional transitional care beds (temporary contract beds) through to June and additional community, convalescence and district hospital beds on a permanent basis.

In addition, up to 250 community care beds will be made available around the country. About 60 of these are already open.

“Overcrowding in our hospitals has eased since January and is trending downwards,” said Minister Varadkar .

“But it remains higher than at this point last year. Similarly the number of delayed discharges has fallen from a peak of 850 but remains over 700. For these reasons, it is necessary to take additional action to provide more nursing home placements to free up acute hospital beds and make more community, convalesce and district hospital beds available.

“The implementation of these measures has now begun but will take about eight weeks to fully implement.”

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