June 25, 2024
The quality of Mental Health Services is on a downward trajectory – Mark Ward TD

Sinn Fein spokesperson for Mental Health, Mark Ward TD, has expressed grave concerns that acute mental health inpatient centre providers are struggling to meet minimum regulatory standards in key areas like staffing, care planning, risk management and premises.

Worryingly, 42 instances of sexual assault were reported last year in approved mental health facilities This is up from 12 instances in 2022.

Speaking after the publication of the Mental Health Commission Annual Report., Teachta Ward said.

“The Annual Report by Mental Health Commission has expressed concern of continued failure of mental health services to comply with minimum standards.

“What particularly concerns me is that the quality of mental health services is on a downward trajectory.

“We have had numerous reports over the last few years from the Mental Health Commission, Maskey etc and they all highlight the same problems that mental health services are failing to meet minimum regulatory standards in key areas like staffing, care planning, risk management and premises.

“The Mental Health Commission inspected 66 registered approved centres. There was a deterioration in overall levels of compliance levels with legal requirements, Overall, the compliance rate of 85% last year was a decrease on the 88.37% figure reported in 2022.

“It is clear that governance and management has not kept pace with patient needs, expectations and rights.

“Worryingly, 42 instances of sexual assault were reported last year in approved mental health facilities This is up from 12 instances in 2022.

“I am calling for immediate Government action to be taken to safeguard some of our most vulnerable citizens.

“The report also calls for meaningful investment for mental health. At present Ireland provides just over 5% of the overall health budget to mental health. The World Health Organisation recommends a minimum of 10%.

“Unfortunately, we are seeing the fallout now of years of underinvestment by the Government in mental health.

“If the Government are serious about tackling the problems that they have presided over in mental health services than they will simply have to put their money where their mouth is in this year’s budget.”

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