Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services

Questions (181)

Fiona O'Loughlin

Question:

181. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Health his views on the number of children and adolescents awaiting treatment and-or assessments from CAMHS. [7041/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

Developing Mental Health services remains a priority for Government. The recent Budget provided an additional €55 million to progress new developments in mental health which brings overall HSE mental health funding to nearly €1 billion in 2019.

It is important to note that the number of referrals to CAMHS increased from around 12,800 referrals received in 2011 to around 18,100 referrals expected in 2019. Cases assessed by professionals as urgent are seen as a matter of priority.

The total number of children on CAMHS Waiting List was 2,523 at the end of January 2019. The HSE has prioritised reducing CAMHS waiting lists, particularly those over 12 months, which was 310 in January.

There are now 70 CAMHS teams, and 3 Paediatric Liaison Teams. All aspects of CAMHS nationally are being improved by the HSE under its annual Service Plans. This includes better out-of-hours and 7/7 day cover, progression of Day Hospital care, developing specialist teams such as Eating Disorders, and improved Prevention and Early Intervention services.

In conjunction with the Department of Health and the HSE, I am progressing various initiatives to enhance CAMHS, and also to adopt a wider approach around Prevention and Early Intervention measures, designed to alleviate pressures on the specialist CAMHS service. These include maximising the impact of the additional Primary Care Assistant Psychologists recruited in 2018 to relieve pressures on CAMHS; roll-out by the HSE of various e-mental health pilot projects; additional Mental Health Nurse training places coming on-stream to help fill existing vacancies; and a review of CAMHS under the refresh of A Vision for Change.

There is regular monitoring of CAMHS activity and staffing data by the Department of Health in conjunction with the HSE. In addition, I have held meetings with, and sought further information from, the Chief Officers and Executive Clinical Directors of the CHOs specifically on CAMHS vacancies, with a view to improving the rate of recruitment for CAMHS staff.

HSE Agency Staff Expenditure

Questions (182)

Bríd Smith

Question:

182. Deputy Bríd Smith asked the Minister for Health the cost incurred in using agency nurses for the public health system in each of the years 2016 to 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5938/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

Nursing Staff Remuneration

Questions (183)

Bríd Smith

Question:

183. Deputy Bríd Smith asked the Minister for Health the estimated cost of a pay award to nurses and midwifes of 12% in the 2019 financial year; the amount of such a figure that would be returned to the State in PRSI, tax and USC; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5939/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

Services for People with Disabilities

Questions (184)

Frank O'Rourke

Question:

184. Deputy Frank O'Rourke asked the Minister for Health further to Parliamentary Question No. 167 of 30 January 2019, if one of the 25 dieticians or an allocation of clinical hours could be made available to north Kildare disability network to provide services to, for example, children with autism who have dietetic requirements (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12168/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

HSE Agency Staff Expenditure

Questions (185)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

185. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health the amount allocated to his Department spent on agency nurses; the percentage of nurses this is; the way in which this compares with the same statistics in each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5942/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

Nursing Staff Recruitment

Questions (186)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

186. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health if he has commissioned or carried out an investigation into the projected number of nursing staff that will be needed over the next five years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5943/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

At the end of 2017 a National Strategic Framework for Health and Social Care Workforce Planning was launched by the Department of Health which aims to support the recruitment and retention of the right mix of workers, including those of nurses, across the health and social care system to meet planned and projected service need.

An action plan for initial implementation is currently being progressed. Actions taken during the initial year of implementation (2018) include the following:

- Governance Structures have been established;

- A Head of Strategic Workforce Planning and Intelligence has been appointed in the HSE;

- Two workshops have been health between representatives of the health and education sectors, with the aim of establishing protocols for closer engagement between the sectors.

While the implementation of the framework is continuing, the existing method of nurse workforce planning for our health service on an annual basis remains in place. All recruitment, including that of nurses and midwives, must take place in the context of the funding resources allocated and the HSE National Service Plan 2019.

Nursing Staff Data

Questions (187)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

187. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health the number of nurses working in the health service by grade (details supplied); the way in which this compares with the same statistics in each of the past ten years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5941/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

National Children's Hospital

Questions (188)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

188. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health the details of the tender process used to recruit the contractors for the new national children's hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5944/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) has statutory responsibility for planning, designing, building and equipping the new children's hospital.

The size, complexity and specialist nature of the new children's hospital informed the decision by the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) to adopt a two-stage procurement process comprised of:

- Procurement Stage 1: A full tender and contract for Phase A (below ground including basement works) on the basis of a detailed design with the tendering of Phase B (the main above ground works) on a Preliminary first stage design with an approximate and remeasurable bill of quantities reflecting the Preliminary first stage design. The contract was awarded to the main and specialists contractor on 3 August 2017.

- Procurement Stage 2: While the basement Phase A works were under construction, the second stage detailed design for the above ground Phase B works was completed. This was done on a remeasurable basis with a full bill of quantities priced at the first stage Preliminary design tendered rates. Phase B works were instructed on 8 January 2019.

HSE Agency Staff

Questions (189)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

189. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health if he has commissioned or carried out an investigation into the cost-benefit analysis of the use of agency staff versus full-time staff across the public sector; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5945/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

Disabilities Assessments

Questions (190)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

190. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health the discussions he has had with the Ministers for Children and Youth Affairs and Education and Skills with regard to the increasing length of time children are waiting for assessments of needs and access to early intervention in the case of disability; if consideration has been given to a strategy across all three Departments that will see disabled and vulnerable children receiving the intervention, supports and resources they need; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6987/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

The Department of Health is at any given time engaged in a number of cross departmental initiatives, programmes and strategies that all serve to improve services and outcomes for children with additional needs in a range of settings.

In relation to Assessment of Need specifically , this process is focused on providing an assessment of Health Needs for children and it is therefore a matter solely for this Department and the HSE.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.