Tag Archives: dual diagnosis

This afternoon.

In the Dáil.

During Questions on Promised Legislation.

Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald spoke about the late Dara Quigley and her question was responded to by Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald.

Mick Barry, of the Solidarity-People Before Profit party, also spoke about Dara and Fine Gael’s Minister of State for Mental Health Helen McEntee responded to him.

Their exchanges:

Mary Lou McDonald: “Tánaiste, yesterday, the Taoiseach indicated that you would be more than happy, in fact delighted, it seemed, to come before the House and make a statement on the matters surrounding Templemore and some of the issues that we touched on and Leaders’ Questions. You also indicated that you would be quite happy to take questions in that regard. So I want to know, when you propose to do that.

“And can I also say, Tánaiste, when you take to your feet  on that occasion, I would like you also to shed some light on the case of Dara Quigley. A young woman who died by  suicide on April 12. She had been detained by gardaí some days previously, under the Mental Health Act. She had been walking naked on a Dublin street when detained and Garda CCTV footage of this detention  was posted on Facebook. A really deplorable and revolting turn of events and something that has brought great hardship to her family and clearly brought very, very great distress to Dara. So we mark her passing and when we talk about Garda culture and reform and accountability, I suppose this the rawest end, the sharpest end of deplorable, a deplorable culture of humiliation and disregard for human beings.”

“So, Tánaiste, I hope that you will, as the Taoiseach promised, come before the House, make your statement, take questions and I hope also that you might shed some light on the accountability that will be held for the life of Dara Quigley.”

Frances Fitzgerald: “Well, in relation to the individual case that you mention, deputy. Everybody would be totally disturbed and appalled by the story that has been reported in the media and actions are following on from that. As you know, that has been reported, there is an investigation and there is a GSOC inquiry but, just to say, of course our thoughts are with, are with that young woman’s family, given the appalling and very, very sad sequence of events. No doubt, the business committee can discuss the question of ministers appearing before the Dáil and, certainly, I want to make the point that, I don’t want to cut across in any way the work that the Public Accounts Committee is doing in relation to Templemore.”

Mick Barry: “There has been media comment on the circumstances leading up to the death of the journalist and blogger Dara Quigley. Very serious questions have been raised about the Garda Síochána and their treatment of the most vulnerable in society. I want to leave those questions for another day.”

“Today, I want to ask you a question on dual diagnosis. Dara suffered and struggled with both addiction and mental health problems. She received help from many agencies but what was available was not sufficient. A particular problem was the lack of dual diagnosis services for psychiatric and addiction problems are treated together in a professional and properly funded manner. My question to the Tánaiste: does she see a legislative pathway to addressing this problem?”

Helen McEntee: “Just to join you in offering my condolences to her family and to her friends. This is, you know, it’s an absolutely terrible situation and it’s deplorable what has happened consequently since. The issue of dual diagnosis is something that we haven’t dealt with in the past and we know that in a significant number of suicides, there is a link between drug or alcohol use as well. We’re currently developing a clinical programme on the issue of dual diagnosis.”

“We’ve appointed a national clinical lead who will be working to develop a programme which means that if somebody is suffering from either a drug or alcohol problem that is leading on to a mental health problem, that there will be a clear clinical pathway for our doctors and nurses within our acute hospitals but also in our primary care settings so there’s work well underway and we’d be hoping to continue that into the year.”

Watch Dáil proceedings live here


From top: Caoilte O Broin, who was found in the River Liffey on January 2, after going missing on December 29, 2015; and smiling face masks

You may recall the death of Caoilte O Broin.

Caoilte suffered from mental health problems and drank heavily, meaning he had what is termed  ‘dual diagnosis‘, something most mental health services in Ireland will not treat.

Tomorrow night Caoilte’s family and friends will hold a silent candlelit vigil outside Leinster House on Kildare Street, Dublin, at 7pm.

They will distribute smiling face masks to represent how people tend to hide their mental health illnesses.

Previously: An Avoidable Death

Caoilte’s Dual Diagnosis

Pics: Cat O Broin


Caoilte O Broin

Caoilte O Broin was found dead in the River Liffey on January 2, after going missing on December 29, 2015.

Caoilte had suffered from mental health problems for several years. In addition to this, Caoilte drank heavily so he had what is called a ‘dual diagnosis‘ – something most mental health services in Ireland will not treat, according to Dual Diagnosis Ireland.

Caoilte’s sister Catriona said because of Caoilte’s drinking, his doctor insisted nothing could be done to help him.

Further to this…

Shane Gillen writes:

Many of you may now be aware of Caoilte O Broin’s story. Caoilte died needlessly due to systemic failures that let families all across this country down when someone is suffering from mental health issues.

Caoilte died from his mental illness.

This could have been prevented. We are seeking legislative changes so that no other family will have to endure the suffering that Caoilte and his family have had to. On Feb 19th, we have been invited on to The Late Late Show to speak about Caoilte’s story in more detail.

On the 11th of Feb – just over one month from when we found Caoilte – we will be holding a silent candlelit vigil outside Government buildings. We will be distributing smiling face masks to represent how we tend to hide our mental health illnesses, and we will ask people to wear the masks during the vigil.

Anyone’s brother – a vigil by candlelight for Caoilte (Facebook)

Related: Dual Diagnosis Ireland

Previously: An Avoidable Death


Caoilte O Broin, who was found in the River Liffey on January 2, after going missing on December 29, 2015

You may recall an anonymous article published on Joe.ie, entitled ‘My brother says he wants to kill my family and no one can help us‘ in early December.

The piece was written by Catriona O Broin about her brother Caoilte, who suffered from mental health problems and extreme psychosis for several years.

He was found dead in the River Liffey on January 2.

In yesterday’s Sunday Business Post, the paper’s health editor Susan Mitchell reported:

Catriona said the family made numerous efforts to engage with Caoilte’s psychiatrist, but were unsuccessful. They repeatedly tried to have him committed. They were unsuccessful in that too. Caoilte refused in-patient care and they were left powerless.

Catriona said a key problem they encountered was the difficulty in getting care for someone with a dual diagnosis like Caoilte.

Dual diagnosis is the terms used when a person suffers from both a substance abuse problem and another mental health issue such as depression or an anxiety disorder. Catriona said that because Caoilte drank heavily, the doctor insisted that nothing could be done to help him. But he drank “because he was in pain”, she said.

Dual Diagnosis Ireland said most mental health services in Ireland will not treat both conditions. For example, if you have difficulties abstaining from alcohol due to  depression, you cannot enter most rehabilitation services. Yet you cannot get your depression treated until your addition to alcohol has been addressed.

“It’s a postcode lottery depending on where you live or whether you have private health insurance,” said Carol Moore, co-founder of the charity Dual Diagnosis Ireland.

Eighty-five per cent of people with an alcohol addiction also had a mental health problem; yet the vast majority cannot access the mental health service.”

The O Broin family are angry at a mental health service they believe failed them – and their brother.

“His death marks the end of a mental health battle lasting many years and punctuated by repeated failure of the HSE to provide adequate help, as well as outright refusal to listen to or cooperate with our family’s appeals for support. I fully believe their brazen negligence played a role on several levels in his ultimately avoidable death,” wrote Caoilte’s brother Daniel on his Facebook page.

The HSE is aware of this story. In a statement, it said, “We take the death of anyone known to our services very seriously. For reasons of privacy, we don’t comment on individual cases.”

The Samaritans 116 123 (free)
Console 1800 247 247

A family’s tragedy: We told HSE our brother would kill himself (Sunday Business Post)

My brother says he wants to kill my family and no one can help us (Joe.ie)

Thanks Shane Gillen