Thomond Park to host expo on the future of nursing homes

Karen Ronan, General Manager of the Shannon Region Conference and Sports Bureau, Shane Scanlan and Marcella (Kelly) Scanlan of The Alliance. Photo: Brian Arthur.

THOMOND Park will later this month host nursing home and healthcare providers, as well as political figures, in their discussions on the future of the nursing home sector in Ireland.

The inaugural ‘Shoulder to Shoulder’ Nursing Home Expo will take place in the Limerick City stadium on February 28, where discussions will be held on the difficulties facing nursing homes in Ireland and the future of the sector in Ireland.

Minister of State with responsibility for Mental Health and Older People, Mary Butler, will perform the opening duties at the conference, which is hosted by The Alliance (the second largest trade association for nursing homes), with support from the Shannon Region Conference and Sports Bureau and Guerin Media.

The closure of 60 nursing homes across Ireland in the past five years, as well as the need for a revised funding model for nursing homes in light of Ireland’s ageing population are set to be the issues that dominate talks at the conference.

The day-long event will feature an address entitled ‘Solutions for an ageing population’ by Sinn Féin Health spokesperson David Cullinane ahead of a political panel discussion chaired by Newstalk presenter, former GP, and columnist Dr Ciara Kelly, featuring independent TD Michael McNamara, Sinn Féin TD and spokesperson for older people Patricia Ryan, Senator Timmy Dooley, and Richard O’Donoghue TD.

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Newcastle West native Shane Scanlan, CEO of The Alliance, said that “nursing homes are at a critical juncture and it’s time for change”.

“A significant number of nursing homes have closed since 2018 and, while the funding model afforded to nursing homes has served its purpose for a period since its introduction in 2009 with the establishment of the Fair Deal scheme, we have reached a tipping point for the sector where we must decide the changes required to adequately fund the care of Ireland’s increasingly ageing population.”

The Shoulder to Shoulder Nursing Home Expo will take place in Thomond Park on February 28. More information can be found on