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"Shut down of the music room"

About: Adult Mental Health Services / Adult Mental Health - Inpatient Unit

(as a service user),

I was in hospital over the last 10 years. 2 years permanently confined at St Conal's Hospital. Previous to this I set up a music room in one of the relaxation room. I produced 300 second hand CDs and a music system. The music system broke down and because no one was fixing it. I made a strong letter of complaint to all the bosses in the house over the psych unit. The fall out from this letter by the financial controller in St Conal's Hospital was that they was going to shut it down and with every positive point I made about keeping it open as music therapy works, their response was negative.

It has now been closed down and encased large glass lights in both corners with hard bean bags similar to a children's play room, because these large glass installations were installed the room is now under lock and key depriving the inpatients to a restful therapeutic room where there was a choice of music to play.

Formerly this music room was popular with everyone and the patients a safe and relaxing room to play music which lifted their spirits and even broke down the hardest audio-phonics when making coherent  speech and conversation. The room now deprives the 30 bed unit for an extra room in a very small hospital compact in space. The room is discriminatory to elderly patients and those like myself because you can neither get down or get up off the hard bean bags whereby previously it consisted of soft leather arm chairs, 5 in fact.

I would like to see the 5 armchairs re-installed, I would like a bluetooth speaker for music left in there (I bought 2 for the ward. I want the glass installations taken out and I want the room opened)

I want to get in touch with the commissioner for mental health in Dublin who allowed these drastic decisions to go ahead. please forward me the address, thank you

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Response from Paul Cartin, Principal Social Worker, Adult Mental Health Service, Donegal/Sligo/Leitrim Mental Health Services last month
Paul Cartin
Principal Social Worker, Adult Mental Health Service,
Donegal/Sligo/Leitrim Mental Health Services
Submitted on 07/05/2024 at 15:11
Published on Care Opinion on 16/05/2024 at 16:13

Dear perseusqc87

I am sorry to hear that that you are unhappy with the changes made to the room used as a music/sitting room. The room was re-purposed as a sensory room for groups and individuals to utilize with support from staff in the psychiatric unit. The new room has proven a valuable space that all service users can access with support from staff in the unit. We take on board however your comments and the importance of having a space to listen to music and are exploring alternative rooms to use for listening to music within the Unit. We will also take on board your comments regarding the furniture and will keep this in mind in any future changes we make. As you also requested in your comment, the contact details for the Mental Health Commission are Mental Health Commission, Waterloo Exchange, Waterloo Rd, Dublin 4 Tel: 016362400.

Kind Regards

Paul Cartin

Donegal Mental Health Service

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