November 2, 2007


Mental Health Service

Launch of report on national conference on ethnic minority healthcare
Irish Medical News (Fri, 26 Oct 2007)

The report of the second national HSE conference on ethnic minority health has been launched at NUI Galway. “For asylum seekers, mental health issues arising from experiences in their home countries are being compounded by experiences of direct provision accommodation and the prohibition on the right to work. Existing support services are either centrally based (i.e. Dublin), under resourced (e.g. Galway Rape Crisis Centre) or not always appropriate to the needs of individuals (e.g. psychiatric services for people requiring psychological services and supports). Appropriate psychological services should be in place around the country,” said the report.


Youth psychiatry unit work to start
Irish Medical News (Fri, 26 Oct 2007)

Work is expected to begin on a long awaited child and adolescent mental health unit in Cork in a matter of weeks. IMN has also been told that the Galway unit is due to go forward for planning permission and as an interim measure, the number of beds there will be increased to 10. Speaking to IMN, Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children, with responsibility for mental health, Dr Jimmy Devins, accepted that there is a shortage of child and adolescent beds around the country.


Tribunals revoke 12 per cent of detentions
Irish Medical Times (Tue, 30 Oct 2007)

About 12 per cent of mental health tribunals result in an involuntary detention order being revoked, according to the latest figures available from the Mental Health Commission. Between the beginning of November last year, when the Mental Health Act 2001 took full effect, and the end of September this year, 1,902 tribunals hearings took place. There were 228 involuntary detention orders revoked in this time frame


‘Vulnerable people at risk from unregulated counsellors, therapists’
Irish Medical News (Fri, 2 Nov 2007)

Deputy Dan Neville, the Fine Gael spokesman with special responsibility for mental health who is also President of the Irish Association of Suicidology, said it was a disgrace that there was no statutory regulation of therapists and counsellors in this country. He said this lack of regulation had again been highlighted by the recent allegations that up to €250,000 had been demanded from people who had presented for counselling at a private clinic in Dublin.


Suicide Prevention

Free service to dispose of unused medicines in Cork and Kerry
Irish Medical News (Fri, 26 Oct 2007)

Doctors are being advised that a free service to dispose of unused or out-of-date medicines is now available to the general public in Cork and Kerry.  The “Dispose of Unused Medicines Properly” (DUMP) campaign, which has been organised by the HSE with community pharmacists in Cork and Kerry, started last week and will run in participating pharmacies until Monday, December 3.


Trained health workers reduce suicide risk
Irish Medical Times (Fri, 2 Nov 2007)

Research on suicide in counties Cork and Kerry have found that training health professionals to be aware of depression and suicide is an effective prevention measure. Under the Cork and Kerry Alliance for the Awareness of Depression and Suicidal Behaviour, the National Suicide Research Foundation has been studying (since 2005) the effectiveness of a multifaceted intervention programme for depression and suicidal behaviour.


 HSE ban puts suicide patients at risk

Irish Examiner (Wed, 31 Oct 2007)

Tallaght is the only major Dublin hospital not to have a suicide prevention nurse, because of a Health Service Executive (HSE) ban on any new staff recruitment. Funding given to Tallaght Hospital by the National Office for Suicide Prevention (NOSP) to employ the nurse cannot be used as a result of the hiring restrictions. While the office is part of the HSE, the recruitment ban means Tallaght's huge population is left without this vital service.


Eating Disorders


Irish Daily STAR (Wed, 31 Oct 2007)

A new study has revealed that more than 10 per cent of young girls living in Ireland have significant issues with eating. And girls as young as six have been treated for eating disorders such as anorexia. The Eating Problems in Children and Adolescents report, from the St John of God's Lucena Foundation, found Irish teens may tend more towar
ds bulimia than youths in other countries.


Parents urged to combat 'size zero' mentality

Irish Examiner (Fri, 02 Nov 2007)

Mothers should talk to their daughters about the adverse effects of "size zero" and quit obsessing about weight themselves to help their teens avoid eating disorders. A leading psychiatrist will tell carers and parents that simple conversations and a healthy attitude to food in the home are key ingredients in the fight against anorexia and bulimia. Professor Fiona McNicholas, of the St John of God Lucena Clinic, says two-thirds of teens are influenced by magazines portraying super-skinny women as fashion icons.