Just one per cent of Mid Ulster’s elderly in homes

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Not even a tenth (7.6%) of Mid Ulster’s elderly population are in receipt of domiciliary home care services, visited by district nurses or currently live in residential homes, according to the Northern Trust.

The figures, provided to the Mail through a freedom of information request, have also highlighted the small number of over 65s actually cared for in the area’s residential homes.

But when asked how many of the elderly and infirm ‘looked after’ in their own homes, live alone - the Trust said they did not hold, or record that information.

A total of 11,800 people over the age of 65 live in Cookstown and Magherafelt put together, and of that number 1,300 are older than 85.

Yet, the number of elderly people that are provided help with needs such as getting up, washed and dressed or getting something to eat, is just 748 across both council districts - 6% of those over 65.

While another 116 - just 1% of the total population in both districts again over 65 - are being cared for in residential homes in Magherafelt (71) and Cookstown (45).

When asked how many homes in both districts still offered residential places to those who need then, the Northern Trust said: “All Trust residential facilities in the Cookstown Council and Magherafelt Council areas continue to operate as residential homes.

“And whilst not taking permanent placements, continue to offer temporary placements, respite care and intermediate care.”

They also revealed that in both council areas they have one client on a waiting list for residential care.

The cost of caring for a person in a residential home in Magherafelt ranged between £32.27-£54.15 per day depending on their needs as of November 4 according to the Trust.

In Cookstown the net cost was between £17.28-£63.01, depending on the home.

But the average hourly rate paid to independent companies that provide at-home domiciliary care for our elderly is just £11.90 an hour.