Roscrea's Dean Maxwell sees some work but threat of new Nenagh unit remains
The Government has said that it has carried out “extensive” work at Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit.
The statement was made in a letter sent to Steve Crofton, secretary of Roscrea Community Development Council, by the Minister of Health’s secretary.
Mr Crofton had made an inquiry to the Department of Health regarding the precarious future of the long term residential care facility for elderly people in Dean Maxwell.
Like many people, Mr Crofton is worried about the potential loss of the facility.
The campaign to save the long term residential care facility has been going on for a long time.
In her reply to Mr Crofton on July 27, the Minister for Health’s secretary, made a number of positive and negative points about Dean Maxwell.
In the positive section of the letter she pointed out that “the most recent inspection report published by Hiqa, was very positive and was compliant with Hiqa standards.
“The HSE have committed to ongoing provision of services in the Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit.
“There has being extensive work carried out in the unit in 2019 and 2020. This includes: bedrooms repainted, new lights fitted and rewiring completed throughout the unit.
“The fire safety works were completed in early 2020 with the sign off by the fire safety consultants in June 2020.
“Development works were completed April 2020 with the refurbishment of the clinical room, hairdressing room and activity area to allow social distancing and infection control during Covid 19.”
The negative part was: “There is a new community nursing unit on the capital plan in Nenagh to facilitate older persons residential services; however, the HSE is committed to prioritising short stay capacity in Dean Maxwell on completion of the new community nursing unit in Nenagh.
“New Hiqa standards in respect of infrastructure come into force on January 1, 2022 which mean that it will no longer be possible to provide long-term residential care for older people at the Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit.”
In a letter sent to the Department last week Mr Crofton said: “I would have to express my total disappointment with the contents of this correspondence. Quite simply what we want, and the people of Roscrea want, is for long term stay facilities to remain in Roscrea.”
John Lupton, chairperson of RCDC, said that unless the Government’s tune changed then RCDC “will be calling on the people of Roscrea and district to engage in a campaign of street protests.
“We expect the Government to make a capital allocation to Roscrea to facilitate the HSE in providing a long term stay facility going into the future.”
In the Dáil at the end of June the Taoiseach said that the Review of the National Development Plan is continuing (funding for Dean Maxwell might be in the NDP). The Taoiseach said that copies of RCDC’s submission for funding for the Dean Maxwell Home had been sent to “a number of Government Departments and those Ministers are aware of the funding request for Dean Maxwell.”
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