Report on Waterford's Department of Psychiatry released

The admittance of children to Waterford's Department of Psychiatry has been highlighted as an area of concern.

The findings of an inspection carried out by the Mental Health Commission have been published today.

The compliance rate recorded by the Mental Health Commission for the HSE/South East Community Healthcare’s Dept. of Psychiatry acute mental health inpatient unit in Waterford is 94%.

In addition to being one of the highest rates recorded nationwide, it is up eight points on last year and is the third year in a row where this facility has achieved in excess of an 86% compliance rate.


Of the 36 areas assessed last July, 34 areas were found to be compliant, while two were non-compliant.

All residents indicated to the inspector that their privacy and dignity was respected and that they could discuss worries or concerns with staff.

Full compliance was found in areas including Food and Nutrition, Recreational Activities, Communication, Care of the Dying, and Staffing.

However, between April 2021 and July 2022, 10 children were admitted as in-patients to the adult Department of Psychiatry.


It was noted that this happened in cases where there were no beds available in the Child and Adolescent Mental Health ward.

The lack of age and ability appropriate facilities was deemed high risk.

In response, the HSE/South East Community Healthcare pledged to provide supervised child-only access time to facilities and outdoor garden space.

The second area of concern was found during an assessment of the premises.

Ligature points were identified on doors, where the patients could potentially cause harm to themselves.

Funding has since been approved to address this issue and that work is due for completion by the end of March.

At the time of inspection, 31 of the 44 beds were filled, with 5 residents in situ for longer than 6 months and one child as an in-patient.

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