THE HSE have clarified that there is no vacancy in West Cork as regards Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS).
West Cork-based TD Jim Daly, the Minister responsible for mental health said it was very ‘regrettable to see factually incorrect statements being made by public representatives in recent weeks.’
He said: ‘There is no vacant consultant psychiatrist position in West Cork and the Camhs team continue to accept referrals as normal. Children in West Cork towns are not forced to present at A&E as stated in last week’s statement issued to The Southern Star. The fact is that the West Cork Camhs team is working well with the needs of young people in the area and they have reduced their waiting list by nearly 10% from June to July of this year. I cannot stress enough the importance of encouraging any young person to reach out to the services available in the knowledge they will be looked after in a caring and compassionate way to best suit their needs. Issuing incorrect statements such as the one last week will not serve any young person in West Cork well, the service users needs will always be my top priority.
A response from the HSE was not forthcoming at time of going to press last week, despite a number of attempts by The Southern Star to clarify the situation. However, the HSE has since clarified that the vacancy is in an area known as North Lee North.
‘There are waiting lists to access CAMHS services in some areas, and this is of course a matter of concern and regret.
‘However, we would like to reassure parents, guardians and young people in West Cork that referrals are being accepted by their local Camhs team,’ a spokesperson said.