How to Get Into a Nursing Home in Ireland - 5 Tips You need to know

Olivia Rhye
March 30, 2024
4 min read

How to Get Into a Nursing Home in Ireland – 5 Essential Tips You Need to Know

Did you ever wonder hot to increase your chances to get into a nursing home? Our team from Grandpal thoroughly researched this topic and provides our key insights in this article. Nursing homes can provide an essential service for seniors, offering a safe and comfortable place to live and receive care. However, the process of admission to a nursing home can be confusing and stressful for both seniors and their families. In this article, we aim to answer all your questions and provide you with our comprehensive guide to nursing home admissions.

Understanding the Admission Process

The admission process to a nursing home typically involves several steps, including:

  1. Assessment: A comprehensive assessment of the senior's physical, emotional, and cognitive needs is conducted to determine their eligibility for admission.
  2. Application: The next step is to complete an application for admission to the nursing home, providing information about the senior's health, financial situation, and preferences.
  3. Financial Assessment: The nursing home will conduct a financial assessment to determine the senior's ability to pay for care, either through private funds or through government programs such as Medicaid.
  4. Room Availability: The nursing home will then check for room availability and determine which room is best suited to the senior's needs.
  5. Legal Documentation: Finally, the senior and their family must sign a contract with the nursing home, agreeing to its terms and conditions, and providing legal consent for the senior's admission.

1. Research and choose the right nursing home

First and foremost, it is crucial to find a suitable nursing home that caters to the specific needs of your loved one. Start by researching various nursing homes in your area and make a list of the ones that meet your criteria. Consider factors such as location, facilities, staff-to-resident ratio, and specialized care services, if needed. Additionally, it is vital to check the nursing home's registration and inspection reports.

When considering admission to a nursing home, there are several important factors to keep in mind, including:

  1. Cost: The cost of nursing home care can vary widely, and it's important to understand the costs involved and how they will be covered.
  2. Quality of Care: It's crucial to research the quality of care provided by the nursing home, including staff qualifications, patient satisfaction, and health and safety standards.
  3. Location: The location of the nursing home is also important, as it should be accessible for family and friends to visit, and should also offer convenient access to medical facilities and amenities.
  4. Amenities: Consider the range of amenities offered by the nursing home, such as recreational activities, meal options, and access to transportation.
  5. Reputation: Finally, research the nursing home's reputation, including any past or current controversies or legal issues, and speak with current residents and their families to gain a deeper understanding of their experiences.

2. Assess your loved one's care needs

Before applying to a nursing home, it's essential to determine the level of care your loved one requires. Consult with their primary healthcare provider to discuss their medical history, current health status, and any specific needs they may have. This assessment will help you understand the type of care your loved one needs and make an informed decision about the right nursing home for them.

3. Apply for the Nursing Homes Support Scheme (Fair Deal)

The Nursing Homes Support Scheme, also known as the Fair Deal, is a government initiative that provides financial assistance to individuals who require long-term nursing home care in Ireland. To apply for the Fair Deal, you must complete an application form and submit it to the relevant Nursing Home Support Office. The application process consists of two parts: a care needs assessment and a financial assessment. The care needs assessment determines if the applicant requires nursing home care, while the financial assessment calculates the individual's contribution towards the cost of the care. The Health Service Executive (HSE) will then determine the level of financial assistance provided under the scheme.

4. Prepare for the transition

Once you have chosen a nursing home and secured financial assistance, it's time to prepare your loved one for the move. Involve them in the process as much as possible by discussing the upcoming changes and addressing any concerns they may have. Ensure they understand the benefits of the nursing home and the care they will receive. Help them pack their belongings, including personal items that will make their new living space feel more like home.

5. Stay involved in your loved one's care

After your loved one has moved into the nursing home, it's essential to remain involved in their care. Establish a line of communication with the nursing home staff and maintain regular contact with your loved one. Visit as often as possible, and encourage friends and family members to do the same. Your continued support and involvement in your loved one's life will help them adjust to their new living situation and ensure they receive the best care possible.


Getting into a nursing home in Ireland can be a complex process, but with the right information and guidance, it becomes more manageable. By researching nursing homes, assessing your loved one's care needs, applying for the Fair Deal, preparing for the transition, and staying involved in their care, you can ensure your loved one receives the best possible care in a comfortable and supportive environment.

By breaking down the admission process into these clear and concise steps, you can take control of the process and help ensure a positive outcome for your loved one. Tell us about your experience and also your pain points while researching for a nursing home by simply sending us a message. We are always curious to hear how that process can be improved.

References and Further Reading

  • Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) - Nursing Home Inspection Reports
    This resource allows you to access the inspection reports of nursing homes in Ireland, helping you make an informed decision about the quality of care provided.
  • Health Service Executive (HSE) - Nursing Homes Support Scheme (Fair Deal)
    This resource provides detailed information on the Nursing Homes Support Scheme, including eligibility criteria, application process, and financial assessment.
  • Alzheimer's Association - Care Options
    This resource provides an overview of various care options for individuals with Alzheimer's or dementia, including in-home care, residential care, and adult day centers.
  • Age Action Ireland - Nursing Home Care
    This resource offers guidance for families considering nursing home care for their loved ones, including advice on choosing the right nursing home, understanding care needs, and navigating the Fair Deal Scheme.
  • Citizens Information - Residential Care for Older People in Ireland
    This resource provides an overview of the different types of residential care available for older people in Ireland, including nursing homes, voluntary housing associations, and sheltered housing.
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Olivia Rhye
March 30, 2024
4 min read

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