20 Sep 2021, 13.28

The Sub-Committee on Mental Health will meet representatives of the HSE tomorrow, Tuesday, 21 September to discuss the closure of the Owenacurra Centre in Midleton, Co Cork at a meeting in Leinster House.

The meeting will take place virtually in Committee Room 4 at 12.30pm.

Michael Fitzgerald, Chief Officer, Cork Kerry Community Healthcare; Dr Sinead O’Brien, Executive Clinical Director, Cork Mental Health Service and Consultant Psychiatrist; and Jim Ryan, Head of Mental Health Operations will appear virtually before the Committee for the meeting.

Cathaoirleach of the Committee Senator Frances Black said: “The Owenacurra Centre is the only long-stay residential and respite facility for people with severe and enduring mental health difficulties in East Cork. The facility also provides day services for its residents and other clients of the local Community Mental Health Team. The families of the centre’s 19 residents were told at the end of June that the centre was going to be closed on a phased basis by the end of next month.

“This planned closure is causing considerable concern for the families involved and mental health advocates. There are real fears about the broader impact this proposed closure would have on mental health service provision in East Cork. The Sub-Committee has already met in private to discuss this issue and Members welcome this opportunity to meet with representatives of the HSE to discuss the reasons behind the proposed closure, the future of residents and staff as a result of the phased closure and of course what can be done to prevent the shut-down and protect this invaluable service.”

Watch the meeting live.

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