Taoiseach must deliver accommodation for mental health in Dundalk – Adams

Louth Sinn Féin TD Gerry Adams has today raised with the Taoiseach the lack of accommodation for mental health services in north County Louth.

Speaking during Leaders Questions in the Dáil, Teachta Adams said;

“On Friday, along with my Louth Sinn Féin colleague Teachta Imelda Munster, I visited the Department of Psychiatry acute in-patient unit in Drogheda.

“This is a world class, state of the art facility which provides intensive short term treatment.

“Patients are then discharged to the community mental health staff for follow up care.

“However in North Louth, community based psychiatric services are practically non-existent and all provision is delivered from a 60 year old building at Ladywell, Louth Hospital, Dundalk.

“Because of issues of damp and the lack of suitable space, much of Ladywell is unusable.

“This means that there is no Child and Adolescent Mental Health provision and no Psychiatry of Old Age in North Louth.

“Additional staff have been allocated to the area and I welcome that, but there is no accommodation for them in Dundalk.

“Unacceptably patients must travel, sometimes up to 60 kilometers, to Ardee or Drogheda to access these basic mental health services.

“There is a longstanding promise of a Primary Care Centre with a facility for community mental health for Dundalk.

“But there is no start date, nothing but a worthless promise which is used to excuse the refusal to upgrade Ladywell.

“I presented the Taoiseach with a choice, either deliver the Primary Care Centre as soon as possible or upgrade the building at Ladywell.

“I have asked both the Taoiseach and the Minister for Mental Health Helen McEntee to visit Ladywell to see first-hand how unsuitable the premises is.

“I will continue to raise this issue until the citizens of North Louth have access to necessary services in suitable premises in their own area.”

 

Gerry Adams continues Louth Mental Health Campaign

DSC_3254_6510Louth and East Meath Sinn Féin TD Gerry Adams met with representatives of the HSE Louth Meath Mental Health team at the Singleton House Community Mental Health facility in Drogheda on Friday 24th February.

Speaking after the meeting Teachta Adams said;

“I was delighted to visit Singleton House this morning as part of my commitment to lobby for additional HSE spend on mental health in my constituency.

“Ladywell premises in Dundalk, which provides out patient mental health services for the north of the county needs to be replaced with a Primary Care Centre.

“The staff at Ladywell are superb however the premises are totally unacceptable, they are outdated, unsuitable, damp and urgently need to be upgraded.

“The difference in Singleton House and Ladywell is stark.

“Singleton House is a state of the art, bright and modern facility which staff I met are rightly proud of.

“There are treatment rooms and therapeutic rooms and larger rooms for staff training and other activities.

“The contrast with the Ladywell premises could not be more pronounced.

“It is unconscionable that citizens in the north of the county, which has the highest indices of deprivation, are not afforded a similar level of service as those citizens in south Louth.

“Louth has the lowest per capita spend on mental health across the State.

“This must be rectified and the development of suitable mental health premises, whether that be within a Primary Care Centre or via the upgrade of the Ladywell site, would be an appropriate starting point.

“I have written to Minister of State for Mental Health Helen McEntee to raise my concerns about the need for capital investment in Dundalk to service north Louth and I again urge her to visit Ladywell so that she can meet the staff there and help move this project forward.”