HSE plans to downgrade Dean Maxwell Home in Roscrea to short term care only

Noel Dundon

Reporter:

Noel Dundon

Email:

nd@tipperarystar.ie

Roscrea  people must fight for the Dean Maxwell

Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit

Only political intervention can save Dean Maxwell home in Roscrea - Lowry

Deputy Michael Lowry says that only political intervention can prevent the downgrading of the Dean Maxwell Nursing Home in Roscrea from a long-stay and palliative care unit to a step down and Day Care facility.

Following a meeting this week  between the Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, the Minister of State for Older People, Mary Butler, Tipperary Oireachtas members and eight HSE officials, Senior HSE Executives laid their cards firmly on the table for the first time. 

In a clear and unambiguous message, the HSE’s officials admitted openly that it is their plan to downgrade the cherished Roscrea facility from a fully fledged Nursing Home to a short stay/step down unit and Day Care Centre.  This will mean that all long-stay beds will be moved to a new unit in Nenagh.

The HSE opened the meeting by stating their policy decision for the Dean Maxwell Home and went to great lengths to justify the decision to move long-term care beds to Nenagh. 

Deputy Michael Lowry, pictured above,  emphasised the need for both long-term nursing and palliative care beds to cater for the needs of Roscrea and its hinterland. He stated that transferring these vital facilities to another town that is miles away from Roscrea cannot be justified in any circumstances. 

Minister Donnelly, who listened attentively the points put forward by both sides, closed the meeting by giving an undertaking to engage further with both the HSE and the elected representatives in the very near future. A similar undertaking was given by Minister Butler. 

Speaking after the meeting Deputy Lowry said that ‘The HSE has finally been forced out of hiding and have had to admit that this was their policy all along. This decision was taken as far back as 2014 when funding was sought for a new Nursing Unit in Nenagh under the Capital Investment Plan. This move has been in the pipeline for years and it comes as no surprise to me to hear it finally said openly’

‘I have stated publicly many times in both the media and at meetings that this was the HSE plan. The new Nursing Unit in Nenagh was always intended to cater for elderly people from Roscrea. The community of Roscrea have been strung along by the deafening silence of the HSE. The plan to deliver a new unit in Nenagh will obviously come at the expense of Roscrea. Up to now the HSE refused to admit that fact. Today they were left with no option other than to declare their full intent’ 

‘This decision is detrimental to Roscrea. The only way it can now be reversed is through political intervention. I have already made this clear to both the Taoiseach and the Minister for Health. I will continue to mobilise their intervention in this matter on behalf of the people of Roscrea’