Denis Naughten has received a response from the HSE which is the strongest formal indication to date, that it plans to close the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea. The response comes following his questioning of the Health Minister, Leo Varadkar in the Dail.Writing to Denis Naughten, the Manager of the Roscommon/Galway services Catherine Cunningham states that following an assessment of patients in the unit “if the identified care requirements for service users results in some residential facilities being no longer viable, service users, carers, staff and all other interested parties will be fully consulted. The HSE will follow the Policy document ‘HSE Protocol Consultation Policy Document in relation to the Potential Closure of Public Long Stay Unit'”.“This clearly indicates that the HSE has shelved plans to use the Rosalie Unit to care for Alzheimer and dementia patients that cannot be accommodated in any other existing service,” stated Denis Naughten.“So what is to happen to a client in the Rosalie Unit who is not deemed suitable for transfer to another service, if this unit is deemed viable?”“The development of the Rosalie Unit to cater for Alzheimers/dementia patients within the West Roscommon/North Galway area is important, as such residential services are seriously lacking throughout the West of Ireland.
“It is also worth noting that the HSE response fails to specifically mention the families of clients. To date, families have received no clarification on what exactly is happening to their relatives or the Rosalie Unit itself. This is just not good enough,” concluded Denis Naughten.