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Plight of carers worse than ten years ago

The plight of family carers in Ireland is even worse than ten years ago, a new report has found.

The second report of ‘Paying the Price’ carried out by the College, Family Carers Ireland (FCI) and UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems, highlights how almost half of family carers regularly deal with abusive behaviour.

The report shows that they are expected to fill significant service gaps in health and social care systems at a huge physical and psychological expense to them.

These are just some of the findings of this new research report which examines family carers’ access to supports and services, how this can affect their health and the daily challenges they face including exposure to abusive behaviours.

The report launch came a day after Family Carers Ireland and their members protested outside Leinster House following anger at the 2020 budget announced last week.

Dr John Hillery, President of the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland expressed dismay at the fact that the results indicate that the plight of carers is worse than that found ten years ago in the first survey.

“My belief is best represented by a play on the lines of Yeats, I wonder if too long listening to tales of sacrifice has made a stone of the heart of those who should help.

“We all must reflect on our roles, Clinicians, Politicians and Administrators and ask are we listening to carers and are we responding in ways that help?”

This is the second in a series of Paying the Price* reports and follows a nationwide health and wellbeing survey completed by 1,102 current family carers between November 2018 and January 2019.

The survey is a repeat wave of a similar survey undertaken in 2009 and allows researchers to track changes in the health, wellbeing and burden of carers ten years later.

The report shows that 44% surveyed regularly deal with abusive behaviour, 70% of carers experiencing abuse as part of their caring role said their loved one did not have access to suitable respite and 76% of care recipients did not receive any home support.

Michael Malone
Email me at editor@galwaydaily.com
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