St Raphael's Centre, Youghal is a HSE intellectual disability service providing day, residential and respite services for 180 clients in Youghal. The majority of the services are delivered on the main campus that includes an old institutional style residential centre, where over 80 clients reside in dormitories. There are also two large hostels, a new 30 bedded unit and 3 community houses.
The HSE adopted the policy “Time to Move On” Congregated Setting report in June 2011, which recommends the transition of all people with disabilities who currently reside in large institutions into community living.
The HSE has established a National Implementation Group on Congregated Settings under the National Consultative Forum, which is comprised of representatives from the HSE, disability umbrella groups and service user representative organisations. I understand that this group is currently developing a high level implementation plan, to be rolled out at a regional and local level in full consultation with the appropriate stakeholders. The development of future plans for the residents of St Raphael's Centre will be a feature of these plans in due course.
The HSE is fully committed to engaging as appropriate with the key stakeholders in terms of the developments within any one service, both in terms of Congregated settings and other reconfiguration programmes, such as the New Directions Policy on Day Service provision in the Disability Sector.
At the current time I understand that there is no definitive plan or timescale around the decongregation of St Raphael’s Centre. The HSE has informed me that its Disability Services Management team will engage fully with the staff and residents in the development of any future plans, to ensure that plans are person-centred for the individuals and take account of the valuable expertise and knowledge of the staff. The co-operation and collaboration of the staff from St. Raphael’s will be a significant factor in ensuring that the move to community for the residents will be successful and sustainable in the long term.