Primary Healthcare

 

The need on the streets is great; there were 9,728 healthcare interventions during 2020. Riverbank is a practical place as well for GPs and hospital consultants to see their homeless patients, who might otherwise fall off the radar. Riverbank’s primary healthcare services are provided thanks to the voluntary support and in partnership with the HSESt. James’s Hospital, the Dublin Regional Homeless Executive and SafetyNet. Treating physical and mental health issues before they turn into A&E visits makes sense from both a humanitarian and an economic perspective.

Merchants Quay Ireland provides a number of essential primary healthcare services, including mental health care, GP and nursing services. At MQI, our clients have access to:

  • Doctor
  • Nurse
  • Dental team
  • Mental health team

Our healthcare facilities are based in our Riverbank Open Access Centre, located at 13-14 Merchant’s Quay, Dublin 8.

Nursing and GP Services

Our GP and nursing services operate during the following times:

GP: Monday – Friday:  9.00am – 11.30am and 1.30pm – 4.00om

Nurse: Monday – Friday: 9.00am – 6.00pm

Compassion in the face of tremendous demand is an essential ingredient to healing at Merchants Quay Ireland. There were 2,263 nursing interventions in 2020.  The number of GP visits remained high at 4,279 visits by 1,114 unique clients. Behind this number are many instances of our nurse, Marguerite, going above and beyond the call of duty – accompanying people to A&E, treating overdoses on the street and giving people respite in the nurse’s room. We mix this with the leading practices on issues such as wound care, blood testing, sexual health, medication management, and gender-specific health issues.

When Marguerite’s heart told her to leave a permanent job in nursing management and return to healthcare at the front-lines of homelessness, she listened. She hasn’t looked back since.

Marguerite is our resident nurse and goes above and beyond her call of duty – accompanying people to A&E, treating overdoses on the streets and giving people respite in the nurse’s room. We mix this with the leading practices on issues such as wound care, blood testing, sexual health, medication management, and gender-specific health issues.

The Dental Team

Our dental clinic operates in our Open Access centre on Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 9am and 4.30pm. To book an appointment, please call 087 994 3503.

Our dental clinic operates in our Open Access centre on Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 9am and 4.30pm. To book an appointment, please call 087 994 3503. Our Open Access Centre is located at 13-14 Merchant’s Quay, Dublin 8.

Due to level 5 restrictions in March 2020, MQI’s dentist unfortunately had to stop providing support to our clients. As soon as the restrictions were eased and new direction was provided by the Government as in what was essential, the clinic was back up and running. 95 people accessed our dental services in 2020, 67 of those were unique clients. The dental service operates on a drop-in basis in the afternoons and a structured appointment-based service in the mornings, allowing the dental team to provide longer, extensive treatments including oral surgery, full oral rehabilitation work, molar root canals, and surgical extractions.

We see huge tooth infections, dental trauma from clients getting hurt on the streets, neglect because they have no water or their toothbrushes get stolen. When we’ve done a filling, they are nearly crying with happiness.

The Mental Health Team

Our Mental Health Service operates on a referral basis, during the following times:

Monday – Friday: 9.00am – 5.30pm

In 2020, the Mental Health Team (1 nurse & 2 case workers) supported 222 individuals with 3,095 interventions in 2020. Of this number, 127 unique clients were supported by the Mental Health Nurse who provided 563 interventions. Having the mental health team means that clients no longer have to wait for hours in A&E and can get their issues addressed before they turn into full-blown crises.

Other Services

The healthcare needs of those who are homeless can be complex, and MQI has responded to this by expanding our services to meet the growing need for a fully multi-disciplinary approach. We offer a counselling service for homeless people, which works on two levels:

  • We offer a brief crisis counselling service that is targeted at those in distress.
  • We offer medium – long term counselling, relating to a range of issues such as relationships, bereavement, and drug use.

Our counselling service operates during the following time, by appointment;

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday: 8.00am – 3.30pm

For general information inquiries please phone 01 524 0924 or email openaccess.info@mqi.ie