Fianna Fáil TD for Roscommon/Galway Eugene Murphy has said the announcement by HSE officials this morning in relation to the imminent closure of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea is ‘predictable but shocking’.

Deputy Murphy has sought a meeting with the Minister for Health Simon Harris and Minister of State Jim Daly in relation to the matter.

Deputy Murphy commented, “I raised the issue of the closure of the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea on the floor of the Dáil this morning and I will be speaking to my party leader Micheál Martin TD and our party’s spokesperson on Health Stephen Donnelly TD in relation to the matter. The Dáil record also shows that I have continuously raised the issue of the Rosalie Unit.

“The Government has broken their promises in relation to the Rosalie Unit. When An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was in the position as Minister for Health he gave a commitment that the Rosalie Unit would not be closed and in more recent times we received reassurances from Minister of State Jim Daly.  Going back to July 2015 the then Minister of State for Health Kathleen Lynch told a deputation from Roscommon there were no plans to close it and there will be no such plans.

“The announcement this morning is shocking yet predictable from the Government.

“We are talking about 13 vulnerable patients who call the Rosalie Unit their home- in fact rather than closing the unit down- the HSE should be looking at way to use the facility to its full complement of 33 beds and enhance services because it is a facility which is desperately needed in County Roscommon.  We have one of the highest incidents of Alzheimer’s and dementia in the country- in fact we have about 2,000 people of all ages suffer from the disease so the Rosalie Unit should be a vital part of our mental health services in the county.

“These elderly and vulnerable residents deserve better- the Rosalie Unit is their home,” concluded Deputy Murphy.