Cork North West TD, Michael Moynihan has said that he is disturbed by the HSE’s apparent acceptance of delays in the delivery of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in the Cork area.

Deputy Moynihan was commenting after receiving a parliamentary reply from the HSE in response to questions he asked about the unacceptable delays in young Cork people accessing mental health services.

“The HSE have accepted that due to a shortage of consultant level doctors across a number of teams ‘there have been and will be unacceptable delays.’

“While they acknowledge the ‘difficulties faced by children, adolescents and their families in the absence of a fully staffed CAMHS service’, I don’t get the sense, based on the reply, that they have a plan to address these shortages and the delays.

“I have no doubt that the doctors and other clinicians who are currently are doing their level best to deliver the services, but they need the support of additional staff members to deal with the backlogs and ensure that any child or adolescent who needs to access a mental health service can do so in a timely manner.

“There is clearly an issue with both the recruitment and retention of staff for the CAMHS service in Cork. The HSE need to up their game and find creative ways of attracting staff to fill the gaps in the local service, otherwise these delays will continue and service users will be left waiting,” concluded Moynihan.