Choice Matters: Towards A Continuum of Support and Care for Older People

Choice Matters, published by Sage Advocacy, examines how the “dangerous architecture” on which the current system of care in congregated settings for older people is built, presented major difficulties in responding to the challenges of Covid-19. Choice Matters also highlights key long term care issues in Ireland and provides a policy action framework for an alternative model of long-term support and care which could be progressed through the Government’s proposed Commission on Care.

Responding to the support & care needs of our older population

In 2016 Sage in partnership with Third Age, Family Carers Ireland and Alone established a Forum on Long-Term Care, and launched the report ‘Responding to the Support and Care Needs of Our Older Population’ at an event in June 2016. The report found there is a broad consensus on the direction that our approach to supporting older people who need care should take. This includes enabling people to stay at home and in their own communities for as long as possible, to cater for people at the lowest appropriate level of complexity and the need to provide high quality residential care when and if this is needed.

Discussion Papers

Supporting Vulnerable Adults to Manage Their Finances

Most adults take for granted the right to have full access to their own money and the right to spend it as they choose, even when that spending may, in the opinion of others, not always be particularly “wise”. There are however adults living in a variety of settings, including the homes of relatives in the community, who, due to intellectual or other disability or brain injury need support in accessing their money in order to spend it as they see fit. The degree of that support varies from person to person and, like other abilities, can vary over time. Sage Advocacy, having consulted widely with stakeholders in the statutory and voluntary sectors involved in money management for these groups of adults who are vulnerable, have now brought together in one document the Regulatory Framework and Legislative Provisions that apply to the management of the personal finances of people in residential care services. The document sets out the relevant provisions of the Assisted Decision Making (Capacity) Act 2015, which will apply once that legislation is fully ‘commenced’, before setting out the various needs of ALL individuals in respect of their own money; identified as empowerment,  accessibility, accountability, and safeguarding as well as the more obvious personal, social and comfort needs.

Delivering Quality Medical Care in Irish Nursing Homes: Current Practice, Issues & Challenges

The Delivering Quality Care in Irish Nursing Homes Discussion Document is aimed at encouraging debate about medical care in nursing homes in Ireland by identifying current practice and highlighting issues as identified by key stakeholders. It describes existing policy, legislative and regulatory provisions and current practice by GPs and locates these, as far as possible, with reflective practices in other comparable jurisdictions. It also describes blockages and challenges identified by key stakeholders and sets out possible options for addressing these. Areas where further research and development would be helpful are also identified. It is not intended that the Discussion Document would be a definitive statement on the matter but rather a broad narrative on:  a. Current GP practice in providing the medical care required by nursing home residents b. The current and evolving challenges in doing so in a manner that is effective in meeting patients’ needs, and c. Delivering care of the highest quality possible, and sustainable in the longer term It is envisaged that the Document could be used as a basis for ongoing dialogue and policy discourse in order to ensure that nursing home residents get the best possible medical care and on an equal basis with those living in the community.


Submission on the Draft General Scheme and Heads of Bill on the Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) (Amendment) Bill 2021

Submission to Garda Síochána Inspectorate January 2022

Submission on Ireland Initial Report under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

COVID-19 Nursing Home Expert Panel

Sage Advocacy Submission to the Law Reform Commission Issues Paper: A Regulatory Framework for Safeguarding Adults

Earlier this year the Law Reform Commission called for submissions on its Issues Paper, A Regulatory Framework for Adult Safeguarding.  Sage Advocacy welcomes the opportunity to respond to this consultation.  This Paper is an important step in developing an adequate safeguarding system in Ireland for adults who may be vulnerable.
Sage Advocacy is a support and advocacy service with a particular focus on vulnerable adults and older people who have difficulty in asserting their legal and human rights. The mission of Sage Advocacy is to promote, protect and defend the rights and dignity of vulnerable adults, older people and healthcare patients. Its work with people is based on the principle of ‘nothing about you/without you’.
A central focus of Sage Advocacy is safeguarding adults who may be vulnerable to abuse in any form – physical, financial, sexual or psychological. May 2020

Submission to Data Protection Commission on Regulatory Strategy 2020-2025

Submission to inform the preparation of the National Policy on Social Enterprise. May 2019

Submission to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Mental Health Care

In January 2018 Sage Advocacy made a submission to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Mental Health Care, which was established in 2017 to achieve cross-party consensus on a long-term vision for mental health care and the direction of mental health policy in Ireland. The Joint Committee published its final report in October 2018.

Submission to Department of Health on Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards

In March 2018 Sage Advocacy made a submission as part of the Department of Health public consultation on draft legislation to provide deprivation of liberty safeguards. It is intended that safeguards to ensure a person is not unlawfully deprived of liberty will form Part 13 of the Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Act 2015.

Submission to the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation

In April 2018 Sage Advocacy made a submission to the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation on the Consultation on Proposed Guiding Principles to frame the State’s Economic Migration Policy. We made a brief submission in relation to the principles of most relevance to the care sector.

Submission to the Department of Justice on Implementation of OPCAT

In April 2018 Sage Advocacy made a submission to the Department of Justice on the implementation of the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPACT). OPCAT is an international human rights instrument which aims to prevent ill treatment in any place where a person may be deprived of their liberty, Ireland has yet to ratify this Convention. 

Submission to the Expert Group on Management of Clinical Negligence Claims

In June 2018 the Government established an Expert Group to review current systems for the management of clinical negligence claims. In response to an invitation Sage Advocacy made a submission to the Expert Group based on the experiences of patient advocacy.

Submission to the Citizens Assembly

In May 2017 Sage Advocacy made a submission to the Citizens Assembly on the topic of Responding to the Challenges and Opportunities of an Ageing Population.  The Submission provides a general overview of how the considerable challenges and opportunities of an ageing population in Ireland should be identified and addressed. It draws heavily on the work of the Forum on Long-Term Care for Older People.

Submission UNCAT: Human Rights: Vulnerable Adults & Older People in Ireland

In June 2017 Sage Advocacy made a submission to the UN Committee Against Torture (UNCAT) as part of the review of Ireland’s implementation of the UN Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment on 27th and 28th July 2017. The submission referred to issues of concern which amount to inhuman and degrading treatment for consideration by the Committee.