Review of the Delivery Model of the Seniors Alert Scheme - Report to Pobal - Jan. 2017

Minister Coveney welcomes the Review of the Delivery Model of the Seniors Alert Scheme, commissioned by Pobal. The authors, Dr Malcolm Fisk and Dr Kevin Doughty of Telehealth Quality Group have provided an in-depth and comprehensive assessment of the current system.

The review provides assurance that the current operation of the Seniors Alert Scheme effectively meets the overall objectives of the scheme which is to encourage community support for vulnerable older people in our communities through the provision of personal monitored alarms to enable older persons to continue to live securely in their homes with confidence, independence and peace of mind.  In addition, the review includes a number of technical and administrative recommendations in relation to the operation of the scheme, and these will be considered in the development of the new iteration of the scheme, due to be rolled out in September 2017. As a result, it is considered that the scheme as currently configured is working well and no substantive changes are envisaged in the short to medium term.

For the longer term, the review raises a number of issues regarding the position of the Seniors Alert Scheme within the overall provision of services to older and more vulnerable people and the relationship between this scheme and more general telecare/telehealth services. The review recommends the introduction of an integrated "whole of government" approach to this issue with policy input and funding from a range of Departments and agencies. In order to follow up on this key recommendation of the review, officials from this Department will explore these matters in conjunction with other relevant Departments in order to develop a strategy regarding the future position of the Senior Alerts Scheme within the wider telecare/telehealth arena.