August 23, 2023
Government must intervene to ensure specialist course in children’s mental health is reinstated – Mark Ward TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Mental Health, Mark Ward TD, has called for an immediate Government intervention to ensure the specialist MSc in children’s mental health is reinstated at Trinity. 

The College stated difficulty in finding specialist teaching staff to run the course this year, as the reason for its suspension.

Speaking after reports on TheJournal.ie this morning, Teachta Ward said,

“I am calling on the Minister for Higher Education, Simon Harris, and the Minister for Mental Health, Mary Butler, to work with Trinity to come up with a solution that will see this course reinstated.

“More must be done to plan for the future of the CAMHS workforce, in light of figures released yesterday which show that over 4,300 children are waiting on an appointment with the service.

“There are also huge discrepancies on how long a child has to wait based on where they live.

“If the Government is serious about reforming CAMHS, this course is of significant importance.

“It is very concerning that the provision of this vital and specialist course on children’s mental health has stalled. 

“Workforce planning is vital in the recruitment of specialists and in the provision of mental health care. We are seeing mental health services in crisis right across the state, and in particular in the area of child and adolescent mental health services.

“This comes at a time when 735 children have been waiting over a year for CAMHS services, representing a 209% increase since the Government was formed in 2020.

“There have been numerous reports into CAMHS recently, which have shown the inefficiencies by both government and HSE.

“The specialist MSc in children’s mental health provided by Trinity is open to people from a range of different backgrounds. These include: professions who work with children, adolescents and families with mental health issues including medicine, education services, speech and language therapy, psychology, and nurses.”

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