Thursday, 2 May 2013

Questions (244)

Dan Neville

Question:

244. Deputy Dan Neville asked the Minister for Health in view of the fact that the new Health Service Executive access protocols should ensure that all 16 year olds are treated in a CAMHS facility from 1 January 2013 and all 17 year olds from 1 January 2014, if the majority of the first tranche of an additional 150 child and adolescent community mental health team posts have been put in place; if he will provide an update on same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21020/13]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

In 2012, a special allocation of €35m was provided for mental health to be used primarily to further strengthen Community Mental Health Teams in both adult and children’s mental health services, to advance activities in the area of suicide prevention, to initiate the provision of psychological and counselling services in primary care, and to facilitate the transfer of mental health service users from institutional to community based care. 414 posts were approved to implement the €35m package of special measures.

As at 29 April, 122 of the designated 150 posts for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services have been either been filled, are under offer or awaiting clearance. The National Recruitment Service (NRS) of the HSE creates national panels in anticipation of vacancies. On occasion however, it is difficult to fill some posts for various reasons including geographical location, international shortage of some grades, most notably clinical Psychologists etc. The NRS is currently working to ensure that the remaining posts will be filled as soon as possible, subject to appropriately qualified candidates being available.