I have been contacted by a number of very concerned people today, who have informed me that plans are in train to make major changes to the delivery of mental health services in County Roscommon. Following on from correspondence in recent weeks with Minister Helen McEntee over concerns raised with me by constituents, I am led to believe today that local HSE management are planning the closure of a number day centres and residential units in towns throughout Roscommon. In addition, I have been informed that a number of units are going to be re-purposed and potentially downgraded,
In correspondence with the Minister of state in recent weeks, I was informed that services were under review but that no decisions had been made. However, I believe today that those decisions have now been made and plans are being made to implement the changes. I have contacted the Ministers’ office in recent hours to seek clarity on this matter.
The changes I have been informed of would affect services users in Strokestown and Athleague with the closure of residential mental health homes. Ballaghaderreen and Strokestown, I am told will also lose their day care centres, with service users to be bused to alternative services. Units in the Castlerea area will also be affacted. I fear it is essentially downgrading and closure by stealth. Boyle’s day care services are also under threat based on what I have been told.
Most startling of all I have been informed that in recent weeks and months, people over the age of 65 have not been referred for any day care services and instead front line staff have been instructed to refer them directly into nursing homes, I am waiting on confirmation of this also but have been reliably informed that it is the case. If that is the case then it is simply outrageous”
“The report into Mental Health Services in the county is now 10 months overdue and I raised this in the Dail yesterday. I want Minister McEntee and Minister Harris to make an urgent statement on these matters immediately.