Cregg Services residents’ money ‘never held’ in centre account

The HSE has denied that money belonging to residents of a centre for people with intellectual disabilities was ever lodged to the centre’s general bank account.

What was described in recent media reports as an ‘internal HSE report’ claimed Cregg House in Sligo was one of a number of centres where residents’ social welfare payments were lodged into the centre’s account as opposed to the residents’ accounts, without authorisation.

But in response to queries from Ocean FM News, the HSE says this was not the case.
The HSE has told Ocean FM News that the internal report referred to in the media was the 2014 audited accounts.

The HSE says lodgement of patients’ so-called ‘private property funds’ was not made into a HSE Cregg Services general bank account.

It adds that all such lodgements were made by electronic transfer from the Department of Social Protection into the service’s designated Patients Private Property account.

It says Cregg Services, formerly known as Cregg House, was taken under HSE management in late 2013 and the HSE held the funds independently at that time in a patients’ private property account.

The HSE has emphasised that the funds were never lodged, or never held, in a HSE Cregg Services account.

The current system is that all residents’ funds in HSE long-stay centres, including Cregg Services, are maintained and safeguarded centrally in the HSE’s patient private property central unit.

The funds are maintained in a central bank account supported by detailed patient ledger accounts.

Funds required for everyday spending by residents in Cregg Services are transferred from the HSE patient private central unit to a local patients’ private property bank account held within Cregg Services.

The HSE says these funds are made available to residents from their accounts as required.