The restoration of acute psychiatric beds for Tipperary appears further away than ever according to local TD Martin Browne.
It follows a recent reply to a Parliamentary Question to the Minister for Health from the Sinn Fein representative.
He asked for data supporting a claim that recent works at St Michael’s in Clonmel was not to a specification that would allow it to operate as an acute psychiatric unit in the future.
However Deputy Browne says a reply from the Head of Mental Health Services in the south east appears to rule out any prospect of St Michael’s reopening any time soon.
“We’re being told there’s no leeway – one of the lines on the letter that came back from David Heffernan was ‘mental health service capital priority in South Tipperary at this time is the Crisis House new build to replace the existing facility.’ If he’s saying that the 700,000 isn’t enough he hasn’t given us answers how much more is required.”
“And that’s what out next step is – to keep pushing him on that. How much more on top of that 700,000 would be needed to bring back just five of those twenty beds to be used as acute mental health beds in the county.”