Fianna Fáil’s Mental Health Spokesperson James Browne TD has expressed his concern at new information that shows that mental health services for children are making no progress.
Deputy Browne was commenting after receiving the new information by way of parliamentary question from the HSE.
“First of all the number of children admitted to adult mental health units stood at 65 as of September this year. If this trend continues for the remaining months of 2018 then some 86 to 87 vulnerable young people will have been inappropriately accommodated this year – a number that will exceed the 2017 total.
“The total so far this year is greater than all of 2016 and it shows that standards in this area have regressed after improving for a number of years. The Mental Health Commission has previously said that this is a clear breach of the human rights and dignity of a child.
“On top of this, there has also been a fall in the number of staff employed in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services with 23 fewer employed in September compared to the end of 2017. It is extraordinary that this should be happening. The total number of CAMHS staff is still barely over half what was recommended in the flagship 2006 policy, A Vision for Change. It needs to be tackled with urgency,” concluded Browne.