Tanaiste acknowledges importance of Dean Maxwell - Michael Lowry

Roscrea  people must fight for the Dean Maxwell

Dean Maxwell Community Nursing Unit

Deputy Michael Lowry, T.D., has again raised the future of the Dean Maxwell Nursing Home in Roscrea with Tanaiste Leo Varadkar.

Addressing the Tanaiste during Questions on Promised Legislation, Deputy Lowry said he was raising the matter in the context of the Review of the National Development Plan.

Deputy Lowry has held meetings with community groups in the town over the past number of weeks. The groups have now made an application for funding under the NDP and are awaiting a decision on this application.

Deputy Lowry queried the timescale involved in the process for appraisal, evaluation and assessment of applications under the plan.

Addressing the Tanaiste, Deputy Lowry said ‘Community groups in Roscrea have combined to make an application for funding to build a new Dean Maxwell Care Home and Community Hub.

“This is an essential infrastructural development, which would deliver a comprehensive range of services for those in need of elderly care in Roscrea and district’ he stated.

For over 50 years Tipperary had three centres for elderly care, namely Thurles, Nenagh and Roscrea. When the last Health Plan was formulated, the HSE, with political encouragement, downgraded Roscrea.

“I raised this matter with the Taoiseach and the Minister for Health a few months ago. The Minister for Health, at my request, organised a meeting with Senior Executives of the HSE. At this meeting the HSE outlined their true intentions. It is the policy and intention of the HSE to move long-stay beds out of Roscrea to Nenagh. Dean Maxwell would then become a short-stay unit with no meaningful future.

“Through this policy, Dean Maxwell is effectively consigned to closure by stealth. This would have disastrous consequences for the delivery of elderly care for the citizens of Roscrea.

“We cannot allow the services in Roscrea to be sacrificed. This unforgivable injustice must be addressed”, Mr. Lowry stated.

The Tanaiste Mr. Leo Varadkar, thanked Deputy Lowry for raising this important issue and said that the Dean Maxwell Unit needs to be upgraded and modernised in order to meet HIQA standards.

‘I have been informed that they had been asked to make a submission to the Review on the National Development Plan and that they have done exactly this. That Review is underway, I don’t have an exact timeline, but we’d expect to have the Review completed within a couple of months’

‘I do wish to acknowledge the importance of having such a unit in Roscrea and I will certainly make the Minister for Older People, Deputy Butler, aware that it was raised by Deputy Lowry again today’ concluded the Tanaiste.

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