Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice said the closure of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea was “absolutely scandalous” and called on elected representatives to band together and fight the decision.
Reacting to the announcement yesterday (Wednesday), he said: “I am throwing down the gauntlet to all politicians to vote against this Government at every possible opportunity until this decision is overturned.
“Elected representatives who support this Government, either directly or through the confidence and supply agreement, must now make a choice. Do they support these people or do they turn a blind eye due to party politics?
“The care that the residents of the Rosalie Unit have received from staff has been second to none and their family members have stated that they are happy there and do not wish to be moved.
“All politicians must follow through on commitments they made to fight to keep the Rosalie Unit open. The time for talking has passed; it is now a time for action”.
‘Predictable but shocking’– Murphy
Fianna Fáil TD Eugene Murphy described the announcement by HSE officials on Wednesday morning in relation to the imminent closure of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea is ‘predictable but shocking’.
Deputy Murphy confirmed that he has sought a meeting with the Minister for Health Simon Harris and Minister of State Jim Daly in relation to the matter. He added that he would also be speaking to Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin.
Deputy Murphy slammed the Government’s handling of the situation.
“The Government has broken their promises in relation to the Rosalie Unit. When An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was in the position as Minister for Health he gave a commitment that the Rosalie Unit would not be closed and in more recent times we received reassurances from Minister of State Jim Daly.
“Going back to July 2015 the then Minister of State for Health Kathleen Lynch told a deputation from Roscommon there were “no plans to close it and there will be no such plans,” he said.
He said that the HSE should be looking for a way to use the facility, which he described as “desperately needed” in Co. Roscommon.
Hopkins pledges to ‘stand with the people’
Fine Gael Senator Maura Hopkins hinted that she may reconsider her decision to run as a Fine Gael candidate in the next General Election following the HSE’s announcement that will close the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea.
Senator Hopkins said she would stand with the people following a meeting yesterday (Wednesday) with Minister for Health, Simon Harris, Minister of State Jim Daly and Minister for Finance Paschal Donohue to discuss the HSE’s decision to close the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea.
Kerrane: ‘A shameful decision’
Sinn Fein spokesperson Claire Kerrane described yesterday’s (Wednesday) announcement by the HSE as “shameful” and called on elected representatives to ensure that the decision was reversed.
“This is a shameful decision after months of the HSE playing games with the families involved. We cannot allow the Rosalie Home to close.
“Our elected representatives need to do their job. The time for talking is over. I am calling on our three TDs and Senator Maura Hopkins to outline exactly what they plan to do to have this decision reversed now,” she said.
Cllr Orla Leyden
Cllr. Orla Leyden is calling on Minister Jim Daly and the Government to take back control from the HSE and stop the Rosalie Unit from being closed.
She said: “The HSE is hiding behind the Anderson Review and the Government is hiding behind the HSE. Government must govern!
“The reality is that the Rosalie Unit is a familiar home with excellent care for twelve residents with Alzheimer’s and dementia that do not deserve to be treated like this, it is inhumane. This is a cynical cost saving exercise by Tony Canavan and the HSE with no regard to the psychological well-being of residents who call Rosalie home.
“I have contacted Minister Daly’s office and asked when was the review completed and when was a copy given to the Minister? What questions did the Minister have in relation to the report and regarding the impact that moving twelve vulnerable residents from their home would have on their health and well-being including mental health? What were the terms of the report? Did the terms include consideration of options to enhance and expand the facility?”