Tuesday, 14 May 2019
An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business
Robbie Gallagher (Fianna Fail)
Recent figures released by the Department of Health show that the number of persons awaiting a child and adolescent mental health service, CAMHS, appointment stood at 2,738 at the end of March 2019. That figure represents an increase of 6% on the previous month.
More worrying is the fact that the number who have been waiting more than a year for an appointment has jumped to 336. That figure represents a leap of 13.5%. I know one young family in County Monaghan which has been waiting somewhere between three and four years and are still awaiting an appointment. It is vitally important that we remember that there are real people behind those figures - children, their parents and families, who are left suffering while waiting for an appointment.
Something needs to be done about this. I ask that the Minister comes to this House to advise us of the strategy he intends to adopt in order to alleviate this serious problem so that families and children will not be kept waiting for an appointment that is needed.