March 31, 2022
Government must commit to opening date for perinatal mother & baby mental health unit – Mark Ward TD

Sinn Fein spokesperson on Mental Health Mark Ward TD has called on the Government to commit to a date for the opening of a perinatal mother and baby mental health unit.

Currently there is no mother and baby unit on the island of Ireland.

Speaking before today’s statements on the Governments Women’s Health Action plan, Teachta Ward said:

“The Women’s Health Action Plan calls for a Mother and Baby inpatient perinatal service.

“However, the action plan does not set a date for the opening of the perinatal facility.

“Recommendation 53c of the ‘Sharing the Vision’ implantation plan calls for a new Mother and Baby Unit to be in place in 2024, but this date not was not included in the Women’s Health Action plan

“The Government must commit to meeting this target.

“The Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service Model of Care published in 2017 recommended that a mother and baby unit be developed in Dublin. It’s now 2022 and nothing has happened.

“There is a prevalence of depression during and after pregnancy. We urgently need a Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service.

“Currently there is no mother and baby unit on the island of Ireland.

“Mothers who need inpatient care are currently being admitted to acute psychiatric units without their children.

“Shortcomings in our maternity and mental health services have directly led to heartbreaking incidents involving mothers and children, including the tragic deaths of some.

“We must have a Specialist Perinatal Mental Health Service that is fit for purpose and free to act in the best interests of women’s health.”

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