A CALL had been made for the introduction of a Dementia Assessment Clinic at the Cottage Hospital, to supplement long stay and respite services at the hospital.
A detailed proposal has been outlined to the HSE by Cllr. Ken O Heiligh and Seán O h-Eiligh in which they put forward a case for the development of services at the town centre hospital.
Those concerned about the welfare and care of older people that is provided at the Cottage Hospital assisted and fed information into the proposal.
The main points of their proposal include:
1. Long Stay Unit 2 provides 'High Dependency' and 'Maximum Dependency' care facilities for 18 female residents
2. Respite, Unit 1 provides respite for 15 beds which will provide a much needed Respite service to over 150 older people annually.
3. Copley Ward to accommodate a pilot scheme of 8-10 Intermediate/ Step-Down care beds for older people from the South Louth/East Meath area.
4. Introduction of Dementia Assessment Clinic
5. The Day Hospital for older people will remain a vital component of the on-going services.
'A Dementia Assessment Clinic at the Cottage Hospital would be instrumental to the improvement of diagnostic services in the entire North East as it is acknowledged that such a clinic is a gateway to better care and support including the appropriate long term placement of patients.
;This clinic would provide an additional related service to its patients but would also be of financial benefit to the Cottage Hospital, providing a much needed income stream,' they claim.
The detailed submission retains the current Respite Care unit and would see the provision of a pilot ten bed Intermediate Care/Step Down Care unit at the Cottage Hospital.
They also claim that the Louth and East Meath area is short of 75 long stay beds as it stands and plans need to be decided upon now to cope going into the future.