Permanent Oireachtas Mental Health Committee to be established

Permanent Oireachtas Mental Health Committee to be established

A permanent Oireachtas Mental Health Committee is expected to be up and running within a number of weeks.

Minister of State for Mental Health Jim Daly says the forum will give the Oireachtas greater say on mental health issues.

Last year, the Committee was established on a temporary basis to examine mental health in Ireland, and made 30 recommendations to improve services.

Minister Daly says the fact that it will now be permanent shows the cross-party commitment that's there to tackle mental health issues.

Fianna Fáil Mental Health Spokesperson James Browne said: "We believe it is important that a permanent committee be in place to discuss and examine mental health matters and policy.

“It is also necessary because despite the good work carried out by the current Oireachtas Health Committee, it has been unable to devote much time to mental health in recent months.

Given the crises over CervicalCheck and the debacle over the costs of the National Children’s Hospital this was perhaps inevitable, but it is not sustainable.

“Stronger Oireachtas oversight is required as is clearly illustrated by the recent finding by the Inspector of Mental Health Services that three out of four mental health centres are failing to reach acceptable standards of cleanliness and maintenance," he said.

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