Staff at St Patrick’s Mental Health Services (SPMHS) have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. This is one part of a full suite of measures in place to ensure continued access to our services and to best protect the health and safety of all our service users and staff.
Last year, the Homecare Service was introduced, consisting of the highest levels of one-to-one support provided remotely to ensure service users receive necessary care and treatment through daily or more frequent contact.
SPMHS is only physically admitting service users whose clinical mental health risk assessment determines that they need to be admitted to hospital. A member of our Referrals and Admissions Service will contact the service user on the day before their admission and carry out a screening protocol against coronavirus. Any risk factors which may be identified will be discussed and considered with a doctor before admission.
For those service users requiring onsite mental healthcare, a number of measures are in place:
- The St Patrick’s, Lucan campus has been designated as a COVID-19 centre to continue to provide vital mental healthcare to those who are confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19. If a service user has symptoms of COVID-19, is a close contact or a confirmed case, they will be transferred from St Patrick’s University Hospital (SPUH) to the hospital campus in Lucan. This is to minimise the risk of spreading COVID-19 to other service users and staff onsite at SPUH.
- Surveillance testing of staff has been introduced onsite at SPUH to identify a person who may be infected with COVID-19 but remain asymptomatic. The testing is carried out via the National Virus Reference Lab; SPMHS is notified of the results as part of the ongoing surveillance for COVID-19. Testing is carried out across the organisation to ensure that the most vulnerable areas are prioritised and to ensure that potential cases are detected and managed as early as possible
- A thermal imaging camera has been installed since last year at the main entrance to SPUH. This camera takes the temperature as a person enters into the building. If someone has a temperature equal to or greater than 37.5 degrees Celsius or higher, entry to the hospital building is not permitted
- All visiting to SPMHS campuses has been suspended since Sunday, 27 December 2020 in line with the introduction of Level 5 restrictions by the government. Campuses remain open to staff members and service users with a clinical need to be onsite. Clinical personnel from outside SPMHS, such as ambulance personnel or accompanying nurses, will be admitted to the campuses in accordance with infection control guidance. Notification of such personnel attending campuses is requested in advance, with personnel requested to leave the campus as soon as they have completed their duties.
- GPs can continue to send online referrals directly from their practice management system; this is a secure and fast way to send referrals and a copy of the referral is automatically saved into the patient's records on the practice system. The process for homecare admissions will be conducted through technological means, using a platform available to both the service user and SPMHS staff member.
If you have any queries regarding a referral to our services, please contact the Referral and Assessment Service on 01 249 3635.