Health services for people with disabilities


If you have intellectual, physical and sensory disabilities or autism you can get a range of services from the Health Service Executive (HSE), including:

  • Basic health services
  • Assessment
  • Rehabilitation
  • Income maintenance
  • Community care
  • Residential care

Who provides health services for people with disabilities?

You can get some services directly from the HSE. Many of the community, residential and rehabilitative training services are provided by voluntary organisations, which are funded by the HSE. The level of service varies considerably throughout the country.

Your local HSE services area will have a Disability Services Manager to co-ordinate the delivery of services to people with disabilities.

If you have a child with a disability, you can read about caring for a child with a disability in Ireland.

General health services

If you have a disability, you are entitled to the same general health services as everyone else. These services may include:

Community care services

If you have a disability, you are entitled to get a range of community care services. In many cases, you will get priority access to these services.

Residential care

If you have a disability and are unable to live at home, you may get residential services directly from the HSE or, by voluntary organisations that are funded by the HSE.

A residential service is somewhere you can live most or all of the time. You may have to pay Long-Stay Contributions for Residential Support Services.

Making a complaint about residential care

If you want to make a complaint about the care and treatment of someone in residential care (provided that the care is run by or funded by the HSE), you can contact the ‘Confidential Recipient’.

The confidential recipient is an independent person who represents people with disabilities when a complaint is made. They will:

  • Listen to your concerns
  • Keep your identity anonymous, if you prefer
  • Support you and send your concern to the right place
  • Make sure your concern is reviewed within 15 working days

You can read more about how to make a complaint and contact the confidential recipient on the HSE’s website.

Alternatively, you can give feedback using the HSE’s ‘Your service your say’ facility.

Regulation of residential care for people with disabilities

The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) regulates all residential services for children and adults with disabilities, whether the service is provided by the HSE, a voluntary group or private organisation.

Read more about the regulation of residential services for people with disabilities.

Other supports for people with disabilities

You can read the Guide to entitlements for people with disabilities (pdf) for information on the range of supports available to people with disabilities, in health and other areas.

Page edited: 17 July 2023