The Irish Hospice Foundation, (IHF), today called on the Government to reverse “as a matter of urgency” the decision to cut funding totally €1.5 million to eleven neurological organisations.
The groups have been refused funding under the Department of the Environment’s Scheme managed by Pobal, a not-for-profit organisation with charitable status. The decision will severely curtail services for people with a variety of neurological conditions including motor neurone disease, stroke, dementia, MS, Parkinson’s and Huntington’s Disease.
According to chief executive officer of the IHF this funding enabled neurological patient organisations to provide critical services such as counselling, advice and emergency equipment.
The National Neurological Alliance of Ireland, (NAI), which represents 31 organisations and 700,000 people with neurological conditions, says it now faces having to cease operations after losing its core funding.
The IHF has worked with the NAI over the past year to create recognition and awareness of the palliative care needs of the people with advancing life limiting neurological conditions.
Sharon Foley said: “We welcome the Taoiseach’s encouraging statement that the charities can appeal the decision and we hope the appeal process takes into account the Governments policy encouraging need for patient voice, patient autonomy and control.
“But it is vital that this funding is restored as a matter of urgency. This situation must be resolved to ensure that the voice of people who are most vulnerable and often not able to speak on their own behalf is not silenced. “