Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Mental Health James Browne says the money raised through the sale of the former St. Senan’s psychiatric hospital should be ring-fenced for mental health services in Wexford.

St. Senan’s was formerly a county asylum and first opened in 1868 and continued to provide a range of medical services until it closed in 2015. The building is currently on sale with a guide price of €780,000. A separate landholding is also on sale for €630,000.

Deputy Browne said, “The former St. Senan’s psychiatric hospital is currently on the market and it is expected that approximately €1.4m will be raised through the sale. This is a sizeable sum of money which should be reinvested in local mental health services in Wexford. St. Senan’s provided an important service to communities in Wexford for many years. It’s important that local services benefit as a result of it’s sale.

“The Confidence and Supply Arrangement put in place to facilitate a minority Government commits to implementing the ‘Vision for Change’ mental health strategy. This strategy makes it explicitly clear that resources, both capital and revenue, in the current mental health service must be retained within the service. Therefore it is of vital importance that the money raised through this sale is ring-fenced for local mental health services in Wexford.

“There are a number of capital projects in our mental health service that need to be advanced in Wexford. In particular there is an urgent need for a new emergency department unit for people accessing mental health services. Staff in this unit would be trained specifically in dealing with mental health issues and will ensure that patients get the care that they need.

“There is a clear need for investment in our mental health services here in Wexford. It’s of paramount importance that the sale of St. Senan’s leads to such investment,” concluded Deputy Browne.