Dáil debates

Thursday, 29 April 2021

Covid-19, Mental Health and Older People: Statements


11:40 am

Photo of Marian HarkinMarian Harkin (Sligo-Leitrim, Independent) | Oireachtas source

I am happy to start my contribution by wishing the very best to the Minister for Justice, Deputy McEntee, and her lovely new family.

My time is brief and I have a specific question for the Minister of State but I will first make a brief comment. I am really pleased to hear of the new investments and allocations in mental health provision. They are all very welcome. However, all Members recognise that mental health provision has been chronically underfunded for many years. The report of the Mental Health Commission on older people, which was published last year, was clear that mental health services for older people are seriously under-resourced. We do not have a comprehensive service for older people. This week, the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists warned of a tsunami of health problems facing older people.

In that context, my question relates to the Covid-19 nursing homes expert panel report. It contains 86 measures to be implemented in 12 to 18 months. The report was published nine months ago. What cost analysis has been undertaken by the HSE and the Department? Have resources been allocated to implement any of the measures?


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