Don't close Cherry Orchard respite centre: HIV/AIDS patients

Don't close Cherry Orchard respite centre: HIV/AIDS patients

Supporters of HIV/AIDS patients who use a respite centre in Dublin have described as "interesting" the HSE's timing on announcing its closure.

The Rowan Unit at Cherry Orchard Hospital in Ballyfermot provides respite services to clients from all over Ireland.

As part of cost-cutting plans, patients will be moved from the unit to Homeless Services on Usher's Island from today.

Their supporters say a terrible injustice is being done to people who have benefitted from the service for more than 20 years.

Local councillor Brid Smith of People Before Profit said the patients should have been consulted.

"We're trying to get a meeting with the Homeless Services and the HSE and are just being blanked all the time. It's very frustrating," she said.

"We'd like the HSE to postpone the closure to give people a chance to be consulted. Patients are quite worried that their health will be compromised.

"The time of year is difficult because the politicians are on holidays. I think the HSE have chosen it carefully so they can avoid publicity."


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