Psychiatric nurses call for more efficient system

Sunday 20 April 2014 16.09
Des Kavanagh said the PNA is extremely concerned about the premature discharge of patients
Des Kavanagh said the PNA is extremely concerned about the premature discharge of patients

The Psychiatric Nurses Association has said a more efficient system must be put in place by the Health Minister and the Health Service Executive for reporting adverse incidents or deaths within the mental health system.

The PNA says it is extremely concerned that the premature discharge of patients, or delays in being admitted to psychiatric facilities, has led to people taking their own lives.

At its annual conference, the PNA had specifically highlighted the apparently high rate of suicide in one area; Carlow, Kilkenny, and south Tipperary. 

The association identified 14 cases in 18 months. 

Speaking on RTÉ's This Week last Sunday, Minister of State Kathleen Lynch said the standard of care in that area was especially good.

She said she could not accept the suggestion that patients were not being properly treated.

Responding on the same programme today, General Secretary of the PNA, Des Kavanagh said a comprehensive reporting system would provide clarity on the statistics in relation to their concerns.

Chair of the Mental Health Commission John Saunders said it cannot be assumed that early discharge or late admittance to a facility has any role in a person taking their own life.