Minister Butler welcomes signing into law of the Central Mental Hospital (Relocation) Bill 2020

Published on: 21 December 2020

Minister for Mental Health and Older People, Mary Butler TD has welcomed the signing into law of the Central Mental Hospital (Relocation) Bill 2020 by President Higgins on Sunday 20th December.

Minister Butler brought the legislation through the Houses of the Oireachtas earlier this month and the Bill passed all stages in the Dáil and the Seanad with cross party support.

The Central Mental Hospital provides a range of forensic mental health services to individuals who require such support. The purpose of the Bill is to provide for the relocation of the existing Central Mental Hospital from Dundrum, County Dublin, to a new facility at Portrane, County Dublin in 2021. It also provides for the transfer of persons detained in Dundrum to Portrane and provides for an ongoing lawful basis for their detention.

Minister Butler commented, “For a long time now the Central Mental Hospital, a Victorian building in Dundrum, has been unfit for purpose. While efforts have been made to refurbish and maintain the buildings, the permanent solution can only be a move to the new, purpose-built campus. The relocation of the hospital will allow for a significant improvement in quality of care, infrastructure available to service users and will help to alleviate capacity pressures on the existing service.

“Bed capacity in the existing hospital is currently 93. The new hospital will have 130 inpatient places. It will be supported by the phased opening of both an Intensive Care Rehabilitation Unit, with 30 places and a 10-bed CAMHS unit. The new campus will also provide additional bed capacity for women, which will allow for the development of a care pathway for this groups of individuals.”

The Minister further stated that, “more broadly, the new forensic mental health campus will allow for a world-class service to be provided by skilled staff to those with the most complex mental health needs. The service will be delivered to the highest international standards of quality and excellence and to greater numbers.”