A senior HSE official has said the Rosalie Unit in Castlerea in Co Rosommon for people with dementia will effectively close and alternative clinical care will be provided for the 13 patients there.

Chief Officer of the HSE in Galway/Mayo/Roscommon, Tony Canavan, made the comments after meeting with relatives of patients at the centre today.

He said the clinical team would discuss with relatives what is best for patients in the next week or two, but said the facility itself would not remain open.

An embargo has been placed on new admissions since September 2016.

The HSE has said there is adequate residential accommodation available in Ballinasloe, Co Galway and Castlebar, Co Mayo.

After the meeting in Castlerea, Anita Flanagan, whose brother is a resident at the centre, said the group was shocked and upset by what was said and did not want to move elderly relatives to nursing homes nearby or alternative centres because they have lived in the Rosalie Unit for many years.

Earlier, Liam Walsh, whose 83-year-old mother Breda has been a resident there for the last eight years, said he had been given commitments less than five years ago that the centre would not be closed.