Future of Roscrea's Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit is ‘secure’ - HSE chief

HSE responds to representations made by Cllr Michael Smith 

Eoin Kelleher


Eoin Kelleher


Future of Roscrea's Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit is ‘secure’ - HSE chief

The future of the Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit in Roscrea is secure, a HSE official has stressed this week.

Cllr Michael Smith made representations in respect of Dean Maxwell with members of the Roscrea Development Committee on Thursday.

Bernard Gloster, Chief Officer, HSE Mid West Community Healthcare, responded to Cllr Smith: “I am pleased to confirm in the event that there is any doubt regarding the HSE intentions in respect of Dean Maxwell the following; the position remains exactly the same as it was when communicated by the HSE at the start of the capital programme announced for public elderly care facilities in 2016 and to cover the period up to end 2021.

Dean Maxwell remains a facility registered under the Health Act 2007 with HIQA for the provision of a range of care services to older people. Not inconsistent with the limitations of the building and other factors there are constraints on the range and type of care activity that can be accommodated there. Like many similar facilities the service will receive variable inspection reports from time to time depending on the focus of the inspection. Occupancy levels are high at Dean Maxwell.

The target plan is by 2021 to invest a further €100,000 in the premises and briefing materials have been drafted for our estates department to achieve best use of same. In the relatively recent past we carried out additional enhancing works in the areas of wet room capacity and associated aspects.

In 2021 and when our overall capital plan is complete it is the intention to move the emphasis of Roscrea away from long stay care to short stay care which is an increasing area of service requirement however I have noted on many times in the past I do not envisage that this will require the movement of or impact on any long stay resident there at the present time.

"Were any such eventuality to arise in an unavoidable individual situation I can assure you the resident, his/her family would be fully involved in and included in any plans. The HSE intention is that over a number of years the changes would occur in a seamless fashion not impacting on individual service users.

As a result of our overall plans we will have increased capacity in North Tipperary and this is exceptionally welcome. We will have a configuration within North Tipperary which secures the future role of Dean Maxwell. I again emphasise that being a short stay care facility should in no way be confused with questions of the requirement for or legitimacy of the role of the service in the long term. Dean Maxwell is required.”

Furthermore, “I note your request regarding any risk to Dean Maxwell should its registration be required to continue or be renewed before 2021. Any such risk is no different to many other public facilities in Ireland today and is in no way connected with our plans. Where any such risk ever arises it has been the practice of the HSE in this area to mitigate the risk and robustly defend the service. I see no difference for Dean Maxwell in this respect than when I last public commented on the matter,” added Mr Gloster.