Press Release

Minister Moloney welcomes the launch of the Mental Health Commission’s Annual Report for 2008

Mr. John Moloney, T.D. Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children today (Thursday, 14th May 2009) welcomed the publication of the 2008 Mental Health Commission Annual Report which includes the Report of the Inspector of Mental Health Services.

The Mental Health Commission’s function is to promote, encourage and foster the establishment and maintenance of high standards and good practices in the delivery of mental health services.

The Minister welcomed the publication of the Annual Report. Referring to the Inspector’s Report, the Minister said “the purpose of the Report is not just about detecting abuses and unsafe practices. Inspections also provide constructive feedback to those delivering services and act as an educational resource and encourage the development of progressive and innovative ideas and practices”.

The Minister added “In these times of economic downturn much emphasis is placed on financial investment. However, there is much in this Report that isn’t about resources but challenging nonetheless. Reforming our mental health services is not just about increased financial investment; it is about staff being receptive to change. High standards in facilities and in in-patient care must be the norm without exception. Essentially it is about putting the service user at the centre, and embedding the ‘recovery’ approach in the service”.

Commenting on the Inspector’s view that the absence of a separate Mental Health Directorate is a serious drawback to the implementation of ‘A Vision for Change’ and to the achievement of high quality standards, the Minister acknowledged the recent decision by the HSE to appoint a national lead dedicated to mental health. The Minister said “This is a most welcome development andI look forward to working closely with this person in reforming our mental health services”.

The Minister commended the Mental Health Commission for their continued commitment to the development and improvement of mental health services.