UL Counselling Services and UL Student Welfare have formally responded to student concerns regarding the inability to re-appoint a consultant psychiatrist.
Head of Counselling at UL’s Éist Student Counselling and Wellbeing Service Dr Lucy Smith explained to An Focal that: “All students have access to the HSE mental health services either via their GP or we can make that referral if and as necessary.”
UL’s drop-in counselling services are not affected, and students are encouraged to continue using them to foster positive approaches to mental health maintenance.
“I hope that this can settle any concerns of the students at this time,” Dr. Smith added.
UL Student Life Welfare Officer Lorcan O’Donnell also spoke to An Focal about the issue:
“Student Life are currently endeavouring to put in place an adequate level of psychiatric cover to support counselling and health services in UL,” he said.
“We are actively working with UL to have necessary cover in place as soon as possible.”
Recent media coverage about the vacant position at UL brings discussion of university mental health provisions to the foreground of student discussion.
Owen Murphy, a third year Psychology/Sociology student states that “the counselling service provided by the university is an excellent support but should not be the sole support. There is a strong need for quality primary care.”
UL graduate Eilís Walsh also commended the abilities of university counselling staff and their approach to students but expressed concern at mental health services funding, stating “it is an issue that affects many and must be addressed urgently.”
Students who may be affected by issues raised in this article can converse with UL Éist Student Counselling directly. They are available to be contacted by phone on 061-202327 and via drop-in hours at CM073 (Main Building) at 10-11a.m. & 2-3p.m. daily.
Alternatively, if a student is unsure about the wellbeing options available to them, they can contact Student Welfare Officer Lorcan O’Donnell by email on: firstname.lastname@example.org.