Limerick TD calls for committee to improve mental health services

Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

Reporter:

Fintan Walsh, Health Correspondent

Deputy Tom Neville spoke in Dail Eireann recently

Deputy Tom Neville spoke in Dail Eireann recently

COUNTY Limerick TD Tom Neville has called on the Government to establish a permanent mental health committee at a national level in order to improve health services across the country.

The Fine Gael deputy made the statement in Dail Eireann last week, noting a reduction in waiting lists in Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) in October last.

“I call on the Government, along with support from all parties, to put the mental health committee on a permanent footing. That would send a message from the Oireachtas and show that we are taking the issue seriously and putting it on the map.”

Deputy Neville said that the major challenge with CAMHS is “the global competition” for consultant psychiatrists.

He also described mental health organisations, such as Jigsaw, as “important for youth mental health. Another important body is the National Office for Suicide Prevention. The latest statistics I have show that the suicide rate in Limerick city reduced from 21.8 per 100,000 between 2013 and 2015 to 15.4 per 100,000 between 2014 to 2016.

“I recognise the voluntary groups that operate in this area in Limerick city who do a lot of work with the public and provide intervention on the bridges as well. That should not go unnoticed. We must give credit where it is due. It is a collaborative approach and we must work on it together.”