DEAR EDITOR: Regarding the article in a recent Irish Farmers Journal – fair deal: what you need to know – by Barry Murphy regarding discussions at IFA farm succession meeting, I am surprised that the alternative to nursing home care, a fair deal for home care, was not discussed.

Many people would not have to be cared for in a nursing home if a Fair Deal scheme was available to be looked after in their own home.

Successive governments over the past number of years have stated many times that they are examining the introduction of a Fair Deal scheme for home care.

As there is a growing elderly population in the farming community and their wish is to stay in their own homes, the IFA should be much more active in getting a Fair Deal scheme on a statutory footing suited to the needs of care required in the person’s own home.

No farmer wants to leave the home and friends who they have shared for a lifetime, from both a physical and mental health wellbeing point of view.

In past years, elderly persons were looked after in their own homes by family and neighbours where our housing stock lacked even running water.

Today, we have an excellent housing stock in rural Ireland where elderly home care could be much more facilitated than in previous years.

There are great carers in every parish in Ireland who would love to work in the care of their neighbours if they were properly paid through a decent scheme for home care.