In the Dáil today SF deputy for Meath East, Darren O’ Rourke raised the issue of the Navan Mental Health Day hospital.
Addressing the chamber he said, “The Navan Mental Health Day Hospital provided a very important and busy service before Covid struck. In March 2020 the Day Hospital building was required by Our Lady’s Hospital for social distancing purposes and, in the meantime, alternative accommodation was provided for the Day Hospital. This accommodation is not suitable, however, and means that services are severely curtailed.
“For example, active day hospital services, provided pre-Covid, are not happening. This means that there is no group work, therapy, or assessments. Pre-Covid, the service would have dealt with approximately 70 patients a day.
“Failure to deliver these services has a very real impact for service-users and, understandably, on waiting lists and the need for more acute services.
“Vulnerable patients are being let down. The Day Hospital is intended to provide services to the majority, perhaps two-thirds, of County Meath.“For those services that are being provided – for treatment-resistant patients and the delivery of certain medications – the facilities are wholly inadequate. It is cold and damp and has failing heating and lighting systems.“Today in the Dáil, along with my colleague Ruairí Ó Murchú TD, I raised these issues with Minister for Mental Health, Mary Butler TD. Minister Butler confirmed that the Day Hospital re-opened in its new location in October 2021 and was gradually returning to full capacity only for the 27 December fire to render the building unsafe for use. The Minister added that full safety clearance is imminent and the Day Hospital will reopen “as soon as possible”.“The HSE is failing to provide appropriate and adequate space is impacting on patients in need. In short, that is unacceptable. I welcome the Minister’s comments but urged her to ensure that the facility is reopened “urgently” rather than “as soon as possible”. I will continue to raise this matter.