Recruitment has begun for the post of child and youth mental health lead within the HSE, the Government has confirmed.
The role has been advertised in the wake of a number of reports highlighting deficiencies in mental health services for children in Ireland.
Last month, advocacy group Mental Health Reform (MHR) criticised an absence of HSE oversight as regards mental health services, saying there had been a "complete lack of governance and leadership across the mental health system" in recent years.
On January 23, the HSE announced it would be conducting "a lookback review" into the North Kerry Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (Camhs), similar to the review which resulted in the Maskey Report in South Kerry in 2022.
The advertisement for the new post says: "This key new role will provide leadership, operational oversight, and delegated management of all service delivery across child and youth mental health services across the country."
Announcing the recruitment process for the new Child and Youth Mental Health Lead this morning, minister for mental health and older people Mary Butler said the new position is "vital."
"The progression of this role has been a key priority for me over the past year, and it will play a crucial part in ensuring that integrated mental health services for young people have a more centralised and evidence-based focus within the HSE.”
She said the role, which will report to the HSE national director for community operations and be supported by a dedicated team for which funding has been provided, will give "leadership, operational oversight, and delegated management of all service delivery across child and youth mental health services across the country".
“We will see the completed reviews and audits arising from the Maskey report, along with the final report of the Mental Health Commission on Camhs later this year, which together will give us real time data never available before to support this new post," she said.
Ms Butler added that recruitment for the new post of national clinical lead for youth mental health, announced last week, would commence "as soon as possible."