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'We need action': Crowds protest outside Waterford hospital over psychiatry unit conditions

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'We need action': Crowds protest outside Waterford hospital over psychiatry unit conditions

Crowds protesting outside University Hospital Waterford on Friday

Crowds gathered outside University Hospital Waterford on Friday in protest over overcrowding and poor conditions at the department of psychiatry. 

Among them was Sinn Féin TD for Waterford David Cullinane, who said the current conditions at the unit are unacceptable. “The Minister for Health Simon Harris and the HSE have known for years about the abject conditions at the Waterford psychiatric unit and it remains in a state of crisis despite repeated warnings and reports,” he said. 

“Citizens were shocked by the photos that emerged of the intolerable conditions of the psychiatric unit in Waterford, of beds made from chairs while other patients sleep on floors.

“What we need is not more tea and sympathy but action. We need more investment in primary and community mental health care to take pressure off the acute service,” he added.

Protest organisers the Psychiatric Nurses Association is demanding that the HSE urgently address the deficit in mental health services in Waterford. "The situation at University Hospital Waterford cannot be allowed to continue or repeated and the under resourcing and under staffing of the Waterford services must be addressed as a matter of urgency," a spokesperson said.