McGuinness - ‘delusional’ response to ongoing crisis at Department of Psychiatry at St Luke's Hospital

Mary Cody

Reporter:

Mary Cody

Email:

mary.cody@kilkennypeople.ie

McGuinness - ‘delusional’ response to ongoing crisis  at Department of Psychiatry at St Luke's Hospital

Deputy John McGuinness has slammed the conditions at the Department of Psychiatry in Kilkenny

Deputy John McGuinness has criticised the ongoing chaos at the Department of Psychiatry at St Luke’s Hospital, Kilkenny.
The Fianna Fáil Deputy raised the ongoing issues at the Department of Psychiatry with the Minister for Health, Simon Harris earlier this month.
“There are ongoing issues which have not been addressed and this is having a terrible, negative impact are patients and their families.
“A number of people have contacted me with serious concerns and at the moment when the numbers go over the allowed amount, there is nowhere for them to be referred on to. There is now not enough chairs to admit patients to the DOP and when number over the allowed quota there is security there. The problem is that there are simply not enough beds.
“Patients and staff are under pressure and the community services are feeling the pressure as well,” he said, adding that he is aware of patients left waiting for admission walking away.
“Placements are inappropriate, community services breaking down and long stay patient numbers growing as there is no where to refer them to,” he added.
Deputy McGuinness recently penned a parliamentary question to the Minister and asked what initiatives had being taken to improve psychiatric services in County Kilkenny, and if he would make a statement on the matter.
The General Manager of the Mental Health Southeast Community Healthcare, David Heffernan responded directly to Deputy McGuinness and outlined how ‘the services have also developed additional systems to support legislative requirement, assuring compliance with the Mental Health Act and added that ‘a strong system of corporate and clinical governance has been developed in the Carlow/Kilkenny and South Tipperary in the past two years.
Mr Heffernan also stated in his reply that local mental health services is also engaging in the Reform Programme to realign services to primary care networks in line with national policy to facilitate integration of services and provide a seamless service to service users.
Deputy McGuinness was very unhappy with the response by the health service manager.