'We are continuing our work to save Mount Cara', says Cork TD

'We are continuing our work to save Mount Cara', says Cork TD

Residents made their way to the windows of Mount Cara House to show their appreciation to all of the people who turned up to support them at a vigil. The weekly vigils are not currently taking place due to current Covid restrictions, but Thomas Gould TD has said the campaign to Save Mount Cara is still ongoing, however. Photo: Damian Coleman

Sinn Féin TD for Cork North Central Thomas Gould has said the campaign to save Mount Cara respite and residential centre for the elderly is ongoing. 

The facility, located on Redemption Road, was set to wind down in a "planned format" at the end of August, but earlier this month the Board of Management announced that the closure has been "paused" until January 2021.

In recent days family members have received correspondence from the board advising them to continue to progress plans to move their elderly family members from the care home.

In the wake of new guidance to people over 70 who have been advised by the government to limit their interactions to a small network for short periods, Deputy Gould said he has written to the board highlighting that now is an "important junction in the fight against the Covid-19 virus" and elderly residents should not be moved. 

"We need to be prioritising the health and wellbeing of the elderly and those vulnerable to the virus.

"I have written to the Board of Mount Cara asking them to consider the risks involved in moving residents from a Covid-free facility in the current climate and the impact this will also have on their mental wellbeing. 

"This is a scary time for many in our society and we should be supporting them in every way possible," he said. 

"I call on the board to immediately contact families and make clear that there is no expectation that any plans to move residents be progressed during this difficult time and to give families reassurance that the residents are top priority in all decisions.

"Family members cannot be expected to plan a move for their loved ones with everything so uncertain.

"While the vigils have been postponed, we are continuing our work to save this facility and will be attempting to have meaningful contact with the board in coming weeks," he continued.

Deputy Gould said he has not yet received a response to his email. 

Speaking to The Echo earlier this month, activist for the elderly, Paddy O'Brien said every effort must be made to keep Mount Cara open.

"Every politician in Cork city must work to ensure Mount Cara stays open. 

"Anyone in Cork with any bit of influence with the HSE must use that influence.

"The place must not close", he said. 

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