Sinn Féin TD for Louth Gerry Adams has said that waiting lists for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services are unacceptably long.
Deputy Adams was responding to figures revealed to his colleague and Sinn Féin’s spokesperson on mental health, Pat Buckley TD (attached).
Gerry Adams said;
“The response from the HSE indicates that across CHO 8, which covers county Louth, there are currently 358 children waiting for a CAMHS appointment.
“Behind this startling figure are children and families in distress.
“These children and young people have reached out, they are seeking help to cope with traumas and issues in their lives but the State is not providing the supports they are entitled to.
“Staff are doing their very best to deliver for their patients but the aspiration of ‘A Vision for Change’ is simply not being met.
“The responsibility for this lies squarely with the Minister for Health.
“Figures provided to me by the HSE indicate that A Vision for Change recommended 6 Clinical Psychologists for Co Louth – only 2 are in place.
“6 Psychiatric nurses were recommended – only 5 are in place. 3 Speech and Language Therapists were indicated – only one part time members of staff is in place.
“This government is paying lip service to Child and Adolescent Mental Health. We need immediate investment and an end to caps on recruitment and overtime.”
Councillor Ruairí Ó Murchú added,
“Myself and Gerry Adams met with senior CAMHS staff last month to raise concerns regarding provision for North Louth in particular.
“The fact that there is currently no CAMHS facility in Dundalk is one of my main concerns.
“I know that staff are making huge efforts to deliver this facility in Dundalk and I intend to keep campaigning until this service is delivered and the children of North Louth have proper access to the mental health services they need.”