Home help service


The home help service provides support to people in the community who need help with day-to-day tasks because of illness or disability.

The service assists people to remain in their own home and to avoid going in to long-term care. The Health Service Executive (HSE) either provides the home help service directly or contracts non-profit or private providers to supply the service on its behalf.

The focus of the home help service is on essential personal care and domestic duties. Personal care would include washing, taking a shower, assistance with changing position, oral hygiene, or help at mealtimes. Domestic duties could include lighting a fire or bringing in fuel if there is no alternative heating source, or essential cleaning of the person’s personal space.

Home helps are not expected to provide nursing or medical care.

Home care packages may include additional home help hours, nursing care and therapies.


There is no means test for HSE home care services and people who receive these services do not have to pay for them.

The home help service is usually for a set number of hours of assistance each day or each week.

The particular supports provided to each person will depend on the needs that are identified during the assessment which is undertaken by a HSE health professional, generally a public health nurse.

How to apply

Contact your Local Health Office or public health nurse.

Page edited: 2 October 2017