‘No positive vibes’ from Daly’s Rosalie meeting



Jim Daly, the Minister for State with responsibility for Mental Health and Older People, met with family members of residents at the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea on Tuesday afternoon as concerns continue to grow for the future of the unit.

  Liam Walsh, whose mother Breda lives in the unit, said that Minister Daly maintained that the future of the unit would be dictated by clinical best guidance and what’s in the best interests of current residents.

  “I’m still very hopeful ahead of our meeting with Minister Harris and Minister Daly this day next week (Wednesday) in Dublin.

  “Minister Daly is a decent man, he listened to us and gave us a significant amount of his time on what was a busy day for him.

  “Unfortunately he could tell us nothing new and reiterated what was said already, that any decision would be taken in the best interests of the residents and would be a clinical decision,” he said.

  Mr. Walsh said that the decision to wind down the unit remains “shocking and very upsetting” for the loved ones of current residents but that they remain hopeful of political intervention.

  “We have three very decent men as public representatives here in Roscommon, and we’re very fortunate that one of them is a Minister in the current Government.

  “He (Minister Naughten) is a decent man with a previous track record of doing the right thing. He also has a letter from the office of the then Health Minister and current Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, which gave reassurances on the future of the unit back in 2015.

  “Are Fine Gael going to renege on another promise to Co. Roscommon? Hope springs eternal but there were no positive vibes yesterday,” Mr. Walsh said.

  Mr. Walsh added that he was also concerned by a perceived lack of engagement from senior HSE managers who were also present in Castlerea yesterday.

  “The staff were fantastic as usual but at no point did any of the family members see any interaction between HSE senior management and residents. While I couldn’t fault the Minister, I would be concerned with HSE management’s lack of engagement with family members and residents,” he concluded.