Official Opening of The Phoenix Care Centre at Grangegorman

28 February 2013:The Minister for Health, Dr James Reilly TD and Minster of State, Kathleen Lynch TD today officially opened the HSE's new mental health facility, the Phoenix Care Centre at Grangegorman, Dublin 7.

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Anne O'Connor, Area Manager, HSE Dublin North City, showing the new facilities to Minister James Reilly and Minister Kathleen Lynch at the official opening of the Phoenix Care Centre

This is the first new building to be completed as part of the redevelopment of the Grangegorman campus, and this state-of-the-art building has been designed to provide a replacement mental health facility for St. Brendan's Hospital. As patients and staff move from the old hospital to the new care centre, work will commence on the development of buildings for DIT. The first 1000 students will be located on the new campus from September 2014.

Speaking at today's opening Minister for Health, Dr James Reilly TD said: "It is incumbent on policy makers and service providers to ensure that each individual with mental ill-health is given every opportunity to reclaim their lives, and live as independently as possible within our society. This objective remains a priority for me as Minister. There is no doubt that the opening of the Phoenix Care Centre, will greatly improve the lives of patients and of their families and friends."

Minister of State, Kathleen Lynch TD said: that she welcomed this new and long overdue capital initiative. "The centre is an ideal model for the type of modern facility required to provide services over the 21st Century. It reflects both the ideology and implementation of mental health policy agreed under 'A Vision for Change' and clearly re-inforces the commitment of the Government to progress a more flexible and patient-centered focus by our changing mental health services."

The 54 bed purpose built mental health facility which includes a Psychiatric Intensive Care Service will provide patients with their own single bedrooms and en-suite facilities, therapy and rehabilitation spaces, enhanced with courtyard settings and a light filled environment to maximise the recovery journey for patients.

The closure of St. Brendan's Hospital - the first public psychiatric hospital in Ireland, will end 199 years of continuous provision of care and treatment to those with a mental illness. The date chosen for the official opening coincides with the day the first patient was admitted to St. Brendan's Hospital on 28th February, 1814.

Today's opening was attended by staff and patients of St. Brendans; public representatives and local residents; members of the DIT Campus Planning team and the Grangegorman Development Agency. Also present were the Catholic and Church of Ireland Archbishops of Dublin - Diarmuid Martin and Andrew Jackson, who performed an ecumenical blessing of the new building.

The HSE invited four DIT students of music to perform for the guests at the opening. Aimee Farrell Corcoran (bodhrán) and Robert Harvey (flute) played traditional music in the function room, while David Howes (pianist) and Maria Hughes (mezzo soprano) performed in the foyer of the new building as guests arrived.

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