Health Minister says fewer people using Meals on Wheels service

The Health Minister insists fewer people are using the Meals on Wheels service subsidised by her Department.

The Department of Health and Social Care announced that it will no longer be funding the deliveries currently provided by Age Concern Isle of Man from January.

Kate Beecroft told the House of Keys that the number of people using the service has fallen by 10% over the last year.

Mrs Beecroft also revealed that Age Concern have been placing a 56% mark-up on the meals, charging those receiving the meals £3.50 for a main meal and dessert that costs £2.25 from the Government Catering Services.

The Minister insists not receiving Meals on Wheels won't leave older people without interaction with others, as many receive other services from the Department such as home visits and day care.

The Department isn't required by law to subsidise meals, and says the current deal with Age Concern isn't sustainable.

The DHSC is offering to help those receiving meals from Age Concern find another provider.