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The Psychiatric Nurses Association (PNA) said today (Thursday 25 th May) it was extremely disappointed and angry after talks with the Health Service Executive (HSE) to avert the closure from June 1 st  of 11 of the 22 inpatient beds at the Linn Dara Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) at Cherry Orchard Hospital, Ballyfermot , Dublin  ended without agreement.

PNA General Secretary, Peter Hughes said PNA had put forward proposals to HSE to address the staffing shortage at Linn Dara, but these were rejected by management. Half of the 34 nursing posts in Linn Dara are currently vacant.

‘The HSE was able to tell us that there is a waiting list of 20 children for Linn Dara, but they were unable to consider realistic proposals to meet the staffing shortage and keep these vital beds open. 

The reality is that there is a shortage of psychiatric nurses to fill HSE posts and without a financial incentive that matches what is on offer to nurses in the private sector then these posts are unlikely to be filled in the short to medium term.'

‘The closure of 50% of the CAMHS beds in Linn Dara from next week  will create nothing short of a crisis for child and adolescent services in the Dublin region.  It is now up to Minister McEntee to avert these bed closures and introduce measures to attract staff into services such as Linn Dara and begin to address the problem of recruitment and retention in CAMHS and mental health services throughout the country.'

Media Contact : Derek Cunningham  086 2430535