Ava Battles, Multiple Sclerosis Ireland Chief Executive: “MS Ireland welcomes the announcement this week of additional funding for respite care around the country by Minister for Health Simon Harris. We are calling on the Minister to allocate funding for the MS Care Centre and allow the national centre providing respite care for people living with MS to return to full service and meet demand for the vital service.”
Due to a funding shortfall, the MS Care Centre, based in Terenure, Dublin was forced to operate at reduced levels in 2016 and 2017. The respite care centre faces these reduced hours again in 2018.
MS Ireland is currently seeking additional funds to open the MS Care Centre for 50 weeks per year to meet the demand for this specialist type respite and therapeutic services for people with progressive neurological conditions. The centre provides 12 beds weekly to help individuals remain at home, prevent crises and sustain caring relationships by ensuring the carer receives a much needed break.
To restore the Care Centre to operating 354 days in 2018 MS Ireland requires an additional €461,403. This will provide 1,164 additional bed nights.