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Mental health posts unfilled, while 413 children wait on appointments

Figures obtained by Fianna Fáil’s Colm Keaveney shows that 24 posts have been filled out of 79 specifically allocated for children.

JUST 137 POSTS – 70 per cent – of the 459 community mental health posts were filled as of Novemeber 2013.

According to new figures from Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Mental Health Colm Keaveney, just 30 per cent of posts for the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services have been filled.

The figures obtained by Keaveney can be seen here.

Keaveney said he found the figures “very worrying” in light that as of the end of September, 413 children were over a year on a waiting list for a first appointment.

“That is 413 children in some level of mental distress waiting over a year to be seen,” he said, adding that Ireland’s mental health services are stretched to the limit.

He said the government is cherry picking from ‘A Vision for Change’, selecting aspects that save money and dragging its feet on areas that require extra investment.

Children

Figures show that only 24 posts have been filled out of 79 specifically allocated for the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) which is running at 13 per cent above the anticipated level.

He added:

I believe the Government is actively undermining the ethos of ‘A Vision for Change’ which envisaged that service users would be included in policy formation and decisions making.
I have received information which effectively the National Service Users Executive is being shut out of the process to the point that they can no longer function.

Keaveney said that it simply was not good enough, stating, “we cannot tolerate a situation where the promised 250-280 new mental health staff is delayed, along with unfilled posts outstanding from 2013, is put on the long finger”.

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