IHC joins the call for respite care overhaul saying respite is not about managing crises

IHC New Zealand backs the call made by Autism New Zealand into reviewing respite care in New Zealand saying far too many people are falling through the cracks.

Autism New Zealand called for the overhaul of respite care following the murder of an autistic woman by her mother in May 2016.

IHC says far too often families are left in desperate situations trying to find a way to manage complex situations with family members.

“Respite has become a crisis service and providers are put under increasing pressure to take people where they do not have the adequate skill or staffing levels available at such short notice,” says IHC Programmes General Manager Janine Stewart.

“We have been providing respite services for more than 50 years and we know what families need. This is not about respite it’s about a need to provide an emergency support service to families and individuals – but it just can’t be done without the right resourcing from the Ministry of Health.

“Far too often we are desperate to help and we try to put something together that falls short of what individuals and families deserve,” Janine says. “That’s too tough on everyone – including our staff.”

“It’s not just about money – it’s about real planning and resourcing to be able to provide quality individualised care in very complex situations.

“We’re all dealing with limited options – we are long overdue for a proper inquiry to sort this out for vulnerable families and individuals.”