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84 Clare children waiting a year for psychologist appointment

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206 children in Clare are waiting for child psychology appointments, figures from the end of May have revealed.

Nationally the waiting list for such appointments stands at 7,106. Of the Clare children, 84 of them have been on the list for over a year. Mayor of Clare, Cathal Crowe has described the situation as “scandalous”.

“It is simply unacceptable that the numbers waiting to be seen is so high, however, the waiting times themselves are also scandalous”. He added, “Early intervention is so important when dealing with vulnerable children and teenagers. The State and the HSE have a duty to do better by these children.

“Long waiting lists for Child and Adolescent Mental Health services stem from the fact that the CAMHS service has barely over half the staff required. Unfortunately, CAMHS is not the only mental health service suffering due to problems with recruitment, waiting lists and bed shortages are common throughout the service,” the Fianna Fáil General Election candidate added.

Clare Sinn Féin have said “mental health services are desperately failing young people” in the county. Their comments come as 85 children. “With mental health treatment, every day counts and that is even more true for young people where early intervention has been proven to have great success. We need immediate investment in Child and Adolescent Mental Health in Clare. We need to end all caps on overtime and recruitment and ensure all units have adequate staff to cover services throughout the year.”

Newmarket-on-Fergus native, Páraic McMahon is a freelance journalist and broadcaster currently working for numerous national and local publications including The Clare Echo, The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent, The Irish Times, RTÉ, TheJournal.ie, The42.ie. A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to - paraic@clareecho.ie

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