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Older people with enduring or recurrent severe mental illness in the Eastern Region of Ireland

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  13 June 2014

Margo Wrigley
Dept of Old Age Psychiatry, Mater Hospital, 61 Eccles Street, Dublin 7
Bernadette Murphy
St Loman's Hospital, Palmerstown Dublin 20
Martin Farrell
224 North Circular Road, Dublin 7
Brendan Cassidy
Cluain Mhuire Psychiatric Services, Newtownpark Ave, Blackrock, Co Dublin
Jim Ryan
Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin, Ireland


Objectives: There has been no specific planning for older people with enduring or recurrent severe mental illness in Ireland. This survey aims to identify the number of affected over 65 year olds (graduates) and 55-64 year olds (prospective graduates) in the Health Service Executive, Eastern Region, their diagnoses and their use of psychiatric services.

Method: A comprehensive survey of the ten general adult psychiatry and four old age psychiatry services in the (HSE) Eastern Region was undertaken for the year 2003 to determine the number of patients, their diagnoses and service utilisation.

Results: 649 people over 65 years old were identified within the general adult psychiatry services and a further 279 within the old age psychiatry services giving a total of 928. (This number rose to 1141 after correcting for missing outpatient data.) 1,397 people between the ages of 55-64 were identified. (This number rose to 1,916 after correcting for missing outpatient data.)

Conclusions: There are substantial numbers of ‘graduates’ and ‘prospective graduates’ in the Eastern Region. It is essential that services for this population are specifically planned for and further qualitative research is required to inform this process.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2006

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