The country's largest organisation for older people is calling for a range of measures in Budget 2019 that will help older citizens ‘to remain as healthy as possible for as long as possible'.
According to Active Retirement Ireland, making healthcare more affordable is key to this.
"People in Ireland are living longer, but don't necessarily enjoy a good quality of life as they age, due to high medical costs and severe lack of choice in relation to healthcare supports.
"In this week's Budget, we are hoping for a range of measures to support older people, our most vulnerable citizens, to remain as healthy as possible for as long as possible," commented Peter Kavanagh of Active Retirement Ireland.
The organisation is calling for a number of measures in Budget 2019, including:
-Enshrining the right to remain at home in legislation, and increasing investment in home-care programmes so that older people can realistically exercise this right
-Abolishing the prescription levy for medical card holders
-Removing the cost of blood tests and diagnostic screenings by GPs for patients with GP visit cards
-Establishing the first national lifestyle health programme for older people.
"What does it say about a society if we condemn older people to live in poverty and loneliness - and in care settings not of their choosing? This Budget provides an opportunity for Ireland to prove itself a world leader in how we treat our older citizens. Recovery, if it is to impact all of us, must be enjoyed equally by citizens of all backgrounds and ages," Mr Kavanagh insisted.
Active Retirement Ireland is the national representative body for over 500 active retirement associations throughout Ireland, with a total membership of over 24,000 people. It aims to end loneliness by offering older people opportunities to enjoy an active and healthy retirement. For more information, click here
Budget 2019 will be announced on October 9.