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Needs and wishes of service users must be prioritised in changes at St. Joseph’s Intellectual Disability Services

10/03/2017

Fine Gael TD for Dublin Fingal, Alan Farrell, has said that the needs and wishes of service users must be to the fore of upcoming changes the HSE are planning to undertake to services at St. Joseph’s Intellectual Disability Services in Portrane.

“It is of the utmost importance that the needs and wishes of service users are prioritised as part of the changes which the HSE intend to undertake to services at St. Joseph’s Disability Services in Portrane.

“I have been informed by the HSE that, as confirmed by the Mental Health Commission inspection reports, some the premises of St. Joseph’s Intellectual Disability Services are in poor condition and, as such, are no longer suitable to accommodate service users.

“As a result of this, the HSE have stated that they now plan to work with both the services users, and their families, who are currently residing in these areas, in order to find them a place to live which is more suitable to their needs, and which will improve their quality of live.

“While I do not believe it to be acceptable that service users have been accommodated in premises which are of poor condition, I am relieved that action is being taken to provide them with more appropriate accommodation.

“I have been assured by the HSE that no action will be taken without consultation with the service users and their families, and then the HSE’s plans will only be considered where they aim to improve the service users’ quality of life. Furthermore, I am pleased that the HSE have committed to ensuring that the rights, opinions, and preferences of service users will be used to inform all decisions, and that, throughout the process, service users will continue to receive a high standard of care.

“It is disappointing that we are now facing an issue whereby some of the premises in St. Joseph’s Intellectual Disability Services have been found to be in poor condition, particularly given the fact I have also had to previously raise issues regarding staff shortages at St. Joseph’s.

“It is vital that the needs and wishes of service users are prioritised at all stages of the implementation of these changes by the HSE.”