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Home / News / ‘Concern and alarm’ over transfer of SJOG services to HSE

‘Concern and alarm’ over transfer of SJOG services to HSE

Parents and families of St John of God service users have called on the HSE and SJOG Community Services to immediately resume negotiations, following yesterday’s announcement by the voluntary provider that it would be transferring services to the HSE.

The National Parents and Families Association has echoed a call from the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly for both sides to return to talks.

Yesterday, SJOGCS announced that it would transfer all services to the HSE due to what it described as a “failure to conclude a funding agreement with the HSE” aimed at “securing the future financial sustainability of the organisation”.

The HSE said it was shocked and disappointed by the decision. Its CEO Bernard Gloster pointed out that the service had “more than enough money” to continue its operations.

The National Parents and Families Association of St John Of God represents 8,000 service users throughout the country.

In a statement this evening it said they were “deeply concerned and alarmed” by the fresh uncertainty caused by the proposed transfer of services by St John of God Community Services to the HSE.

The group said people with disabilities and their families had “sincerely hoped” that progress would be made on the Sustainability Impact Assessment (SIA), proposed by Mr Robert Watt, Secretary General of the Department of Health a number of years ago.

The aim of the SIA was to provide a high quality services in line with international best practice.

“The HSE and SJOG have spent three years working on this, but despite this detailed work the two sides have failed to reach agreement while those with disabilities and their families continue to suffer,” the group said.

“This setback is devastating for parents and families, whose loved ones are now receiving sub-standard services.”

The association has called for the publication of the SIA as a matter of urgency; pointing out that it had yet to receive detailed costs and data required to provide a high quality service.

“We urge an immediate resumption of discussions and full transparency in the interest of our vulnerable citizens,” it said.

“These vulnerable people deserve no less.”

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