Thursday 23 November 2017

Family furious over 'outrageous' wait on murder-suicide probe

Kevin and Margo Greaney with a photo of their late brother Michael and his wife Valerie. Photo: Michael MacSweeney/Provision
Kevin and Margo Greaney with a photo of their late brother Michael and his wife Valerie. Photo: Michael MacSweeney/Provision
Michael Greaney died in a murder-suicide
Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

The family of a man who died in a murder-suicide launched a scathing attack on former and current health ministers Leo Varadkar and Simon Harris over their handling of Ireland's mental health crisis.

In December 2014, Michael Greaney (53) fatally stabbed his wife Valerie before taking his own life. He also stabbed his daughter.

He had been admitted to CMH in Dublin in 2013 but was released within months.

His brother Kevin Greaney says it was "outrageous" that his family had still not been briefed on the full mental health report into the tragedy as the third anniversary approaches.

Mr Greaney said he had received "not even the courtesy of an acknowledgement" over his call for a public inquiry into the mental healthcare dealings with vulnerable adults involved in similar tragedies.

He warned that Ireland must learn lessons from the spate of such tragedies in recent years.

"We wanted an independent inquiry into what happened with Michael," Mr Greaney said.

"We have the backing of opposition health spokesman Billy Kelleher. But nothing has happened. I think it is appalling the way our family has been treated by ministers like Leo Varadkar and Simon Harris, the Department of Health and the Health Service Executive (HSE).

"We were promised our questions would be treated as a priority so as not to cause further hurt."

Mr Greaney claimed his family was told last December the HSE report was almost ready. "That was six months ago and we haven't heard a thing."

The HSE said it was delayed. "Due to the complexity, broad terms of reference and numbers of individuals involved, regrettably this systems analysis report has taken much longer to finish than is usual. Once the report is complete, the family will be provided with a copy."

Irish Independent

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