Sinn Féin spokesperson on Mental Health, Mark Ward TD, has expressed his concern that 11 child and adolescent beds in Linn Dara remain closed despite assurances that they would be reopened in September.
The Dublin Mid-West TD was speaking after a response to a parliamentary question revealed that it is not possible for the HSE to give a specific date for when these beds will reopen.
Teachta Ward said:
“It is of huge concern that the 11 child and adolescent beds in Linn Dara that were closed in May remain closed indefinitely.
“We got assurances from the HSE and the government, including the Taoiseach and the Minister for Mental Health, that the beds would be reopened in September.
“Information I received today from the HSE, in response to a parliamentary question, stated that it is not possible for the HSE to give a specific date for when these beds will reopen.
“This is simply not good enough. There is a crisis in CAMHS with waiting lists for psychology appointments exceeding 4,000 children.
“Over 11,000 children are also waiting on primary care psychology, with almost 4,000 children waiting over a year for an appointment.
“Nationally, CAMHS is operating at just 70% bed capacity. Linn Dara is even lower than this as it is currently operating at 54% bed capacity with just 13 of the 24 beds open.
“In May, we were told that these beds were only closed temporarily and that they would reopen in September.
“It is now October and there is no date for when these vital beds will reopen.
“This is unacceptable and is another failure by government in children’s mental health.
“The government is not treating this emergency with the urgency that is required. Children and their families are being left behind.”