No new commitments from HSE
Senator Maura Hopkins told the Roscommon People that she was “very concerned” about the future of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea following Wednesday night’s meeting with Minister for Mental Health and Older People Jim Daly and HSE Chief Officer, Tony Canavan, at Leinster House. The unit currently houses residents but has been subject to an embargo on new admissions.
“I was concerned going into the meeting and I am even more concerned following the meeting. No commitments were given by Tony Canavan that admissions would be reopened at the unit,” she said. Senator Hopkins added that those in attendance at last night’s meeting were seriously concerned regarding the long-term future of the unit and that the HSE had raised doubt over claims that Minister Kathleen Lynch and HSE officials had offered reassurances back in 2015.
“Minister Kathleen Lynch and the HSE gave clear commitments in 2015 and that was questioned by the HSE last night.
“I was in the room in 2015 and so too were many of the other public representatives who were present last night,” she added.
Senator Hopkins said that she wanted honesty and that this was about the current and future residents of the Rosalie Unit. She confirmed that Minister Daly would visit the unit within the next three or four weeks and that he would reconvene a meeting following that visit.
Senator Hopkins raised further concerns that the unit was not registered with HIQA but was managed through mental health services in the area and that concern was shared by Minister Jim Daly.
Fianna Fáil Deputy Eugene Murphy had raised the issue in the Dáil yesterday (Wednesday) under Topical Issues in advance of last night’s meeting.
“I have very real fears that the unit is being closed by stealth. Minister Daly noted that there was capacity at the Creagh Suite in Ballinasloe and I fear that the HSE plan to try to move people to Ballinasloe which is up to 40 miles from Castlerea and would be totally unacceptable”.