Written answers

Thursday, 31 March 2022

Department of Health

Mental Health Services

Photo of Mark WardMark Ward (Dublin Mid West, Sinn Fein)
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56. To ask the Minister for Health if he will provide an update into the national review of CAMHS that was to take place after the scandal in South Kerry CAMHS; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16681/22]

Photo of Mary ButlerMary Butler (Waterford, Fianna Fail)
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The Government and the HSE are committed to implementing the 35 recommendations of the independent report on South Kerry CAMHS as quickly as possible. 6 have already been implemented, with 13 having commenced implementation.

As part of the recommendations, a full nationwide audit will be conducted of compliance with existing HSE CAMHS operational guidelines by all CAMHS teams. An independent led prescribing audit for each of the CAMHS teams, which I sought as an additional action beyond the recommendations set out in the Maskey report, will include a review of prescribing for all diagnoses and medications - details of this are currently being finalised. In addition to these two audits, the HSE will expedite the development of clinical standards for prescribing practice in children with and without psychosis. Once these standards have been developed and implemented, an annual audit will be carried out to measure compliance against these standards (in line with recommendations in the Maskey Report).

Separately, the HSE is commissioning qualitative research to identify the experiences of children, young people and their families using CAMHS nationwide.

HSE supports are available for children, young people and families affected by the report, with a dedicated helpline available to those who need it. The Executive also established about two weeks ago a Clinical Support Team in Killarney to assist the families concerned, and has liaised with the South Kerry Support Group in this regard.

Minister Butler has met with representatives of the Kerry CAMHS Family Support Group. The HSE will continue to meet as appropriate families or representatives at local level to keep them informed of developments. I will continue to liaise closely with the HSE to ensure that the above initiatives are progressed as quickly as possible.

In addition to these audits, the Mental Health Commission has commenced a separate review.

Finally, details of a non-adversarial scheme for compensation for those children, young people and families affected by the report are being progressed by me. Proposals are at an advanced stage and will be finalised very shortly.


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