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*Cllr Susan Crawford. 

Children in Clare are waiting up to two years for speech and language therapy, an elected representative has flagged.

Detail on the return of both speech and language therapy and occupational therapy for both children and adults in Co. Clare was requested by Cllr Susan Crawford (GP) at the most recent sitting of the Regional Health Forum West.

Services were reduced in line with national guidelines as part of the response to COVID-19. “Priority cases” continue to receive the services, the Chief Officer with Mid West Community Healthcare stated.

Maria Bridgeman added, “A number of Speech and Language Therapists for child and adult services who were redeployed to support the HSE Covid 19 response have now been returned to their substantive roles and have resumed services for children and adults in Co Clare. A number of Occupational Therapists in Co. Clare who were also redeployed to support the HSE Covid response services have returned to their posts since March 8th 2021”.

Her comments were disputed by Cllr Crawford. She said the return of speech and language therapy services as referenced by Ms Bridgeman “does not reflect experiences on the ground”.

Cllr Crawford said she has “documented evidence” of children waiting two years prior to COVID-19 for access to the services.

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