New acute mental health unit to open at Our Lady of Lourdes

New acute mental health unit to open at Our Lady of Lourdes

A new acute mental health unit is to open at Our Lady of Lourdes and will ease the burden on the whole of the Louth Meath Mental Health Services.

The development of the new inpatient unit complex in Drogheda is a modern purposely designed inpatient facility of appropriate capacity and quality, consistent with current national policies for mental health services. The new acute unit will comprise of 46 single en-suite rooms comprising of 38 acute beds for adults and 8 acute beds for psychiatry for later life. The new unit will replace the existing adult acute inpatient units in Ardee which comprises of a male 14 bed and female 12 bed dormitories, and Navan comprising of 2 five bed and 2 six bed dormitories. Our current acute bed number, between St Brigid,s in Ardee and the Department of Psychiatry in Navan is 49 with less flexibility with change in numbers of male and female patients.

The inpatient service in the new unit will offer consultant-led, multi-disciplinary inpatient acute mental health care in a modern open setting. The new facility will provide individual en-suite rooms allowing for personal space and privacy. The unit also offers separate landscaped outdoor areas for both the general adult clients and the psychiatry of later life clients with dedicated areas for social, communal and therapeutic activities, facilities which are currently lacking in both existing acute facilities.

The acute inpatient unit is only one element of a user-oriented, community-focussed mental health service providing shorter-term care for individuals experiencing acute mental illness which cannot be safely and effectively managed in a community setting.

In preparation for the opening of the new centralised service we have appointed additional staff to our community based services in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015. These additional staff will provide community based interventions to support people with a mental health illness to remain in their local communities and any admission to the acute mental health beds will only be as a last resort.