Kerry branch of PNA accepts Labour Court recommendation on Deer Lodge

The Kerry branch of the Psychiatric Nurses Association has accepted a Labour Court recommendation on Deer Lodge.

The Labour Court recently issued a binding recommendation around staffing the new €13 million 40-bed mental health unit in Killarney.

Cllr John Joe Culloty, who sits on the HSE South Forum, says the issue has been going on for too long, and says the agreement is welcome news.

Meanwhile 30 nursing staff are transferring back to Kerry Mental Health Services from Cluain Fhionnain in Killarney, as residents are moved into the community.

The Kerry branch of the PNA has agreed to co-operate with the Labour Court recommendation, which will see the transfer of services on the 11th of July from the O’Connor Unit at the rear of St Finan’s Hospital, to Deer Lodge, located by Killarney district hospital.

The PNA says members are still concerned about the lack of nurses being assigned to Deer Lodge, and believe this will cause a health and safety issue.

Meanwhile mental health nurses have started the withdrawal of services from Cluain Fhionnain, a 30-bed intellectual disability service in Ballydribeen, Killarney.

It opened in 2001 and 30 residents from St Finan’s Hospital transferred there.

Over the past year, 11 residents moved to houses in the community of other care homes, and three will move in the coming weeks.

15 residents remain there under the care of a private provider, but it’s envisaged they’ll transfer to the community over the next 12 to 18 months.

As a result, 30 nursing staff will transfer back to Kerry Mental Health Services, but the PNA has criticised the fact that none will move to a community setting or new service initiative.