More time given to renovate the city’s Glen Oaks Hotel – Connacht Tribune – Galway City Tribune:

The regional TD group denounces the lack of inclusion of mental health specialists and clinical nurses in the new covid 19 advisory group.

Half of the new team were also members of NPHET after the new body of 20 was confirmed on Friday night.

The group says the exclusion of mental health, nursing and midwifery from an advisory group that advises the government shows a detached approach to this pandemic.

A statement was released last night on behalf of the group by MP Sean Canney.

It says..

“The TD regional group stresses that the new Covid-19 advisory group announced today excludes mental health, clinical nurses and pediatric specialists.

According to the members of the Regional Group, perhaps the stigma associated with mental health is not limited to society in general but extends to the very practice of medicine itself. How else to explain the absence of a psychiatrist in this group?

Moreover, not a single clinical nurse specialist is a member. Despite all our rhetoric about the need for a multidisciplinary approach to public health, this is further proof, if more were needed, of the low esteem in which we continue to hold our nursing profession.

Excluding mental health, nursing and midwifery from an advisory committee that advises the government shows a distant and detached approach to this pandemic and the likely future pandemic, these exclusions ignore the reality of the situation in health services physical and mental health.

The pandemic has had a profound impact on people; increasing social isolation, loneliness, anxiety, depression and undermining the social and cultural supports we all rely on. Referrals to mental health services have increased dramatically during the pandemic. The mental health system was unprepared to deal with the significant increase in demand over the past few years.

We still don’t know the full effects of Covid-19, but we do know that Covid-19, the long Covid and future pandemics will undoubtedly continue to impact the mental health of our population regardless of age.

In December 2020, members of the regional group raised these issues in their private member’s motion on mental health. But promises made to include the necessary experts from multiple disciplines continue to be ignored.

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