Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Questions (17)

Gino Kenny


17. Deputy Gino Kenny asked the Minister for Health if his attention has been drawn to the fact that adult community mental health services in Clondalkin may be lost as a result of a lack of suitable premises; if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that organisations such as a task force (details supplied) are extremely concerned about the impact this will have on service users who benefit from having access to local services; if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that Clondalkin has one of the highest levels of referrals for mental health services in the country and the detrimental impact the loss of local mental health services will have on the community; the measures he will take to urge the HSE to ensure that services are kept in the locality; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12399/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

Mental Health is, and will continue to be, a priority for the Government.

This is illustrated in the recent budget, which saw the mental health allocation increase to nearly €1 billion. This is a clear indication of the importance placed on the mental health of the nation by the Government. The overall HSE Mental Health Budget has been increased by €276 million, or 39%, since 2012.

Budget 2019 allocated an additional €55 million to progress new developments in mental health this year. These developments include the development of a number of clinical programmes on such areas as early intervention psychosis, ADHD in adults and Eating Disorders. In addition, mental health services' capacity will be augmented by an increase in Primary Care counselling.

The Clondalkin Mental Health Team provides specialist mental health services to people living in the Clondalkin area. Currently the team consists of 22.1 WTEs (whole time equivalent staff), serving a population of 60,256 from two locations.

The Mental Health Service based in Clondalkin Village is temporarily relocating due to a number of health and safety issues. Services delivered at the Rowlagh Health Centre are unaffected by these issues.

I am informed that in the interests of both clients and staff, the HSE plans to deliver Community Mental Health services for Clondalkin in the proposed new Clondalkin Primary Care centre on Boot Road.

In the interim, alternative options are being pursued including a plan to temporarily relocate community mental health services to an existing HSE facility on the Belgard Road.

The Deputy might note that it is the intention of the HSE to continue to work with all stakeholders, including the Drugs and Alcohol Task Force, as plans develop.

Question No. 18 answered orally.