Visitor Restrictions Now in Place | COVID-19

Visitor Restrictions as Recommended by HSE and Nursing Homes Ireland (NHI)

For the protection of our residents, visiting restrictions are now in place in Highfield Healthcare.

No visitors, children or groups are allowed effective immediately. 

All visitors are asked to contact prior to attending. We urge prospective visitors to be cognisant and understanding of the measure that is required in the interest of resident and staff safety. Older people and people in nursing homes with pre-existing medical conditions are particularly vulnerable if they contract the virus. The virus presents an unprecedented situation for our services and the care provided within them. Highfield is imposing the visitor restrictions in the best interests of residents and staff. We thank people for their understanding and patience during this period of unprecedented challenges presented by Covid19. 

Highfield is monitoring the evolving situation on an ongoing basis and is in continuous contact with the Department of Health, National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET), HSE, NHI and all relevant health authorities. 

COVID-19 Coronavirus Contingency Measures

2nd March 2020

At Highfield Healthcare, the health, safety and wellbeing of our residents, patients, staff, volunteers and visitors is of paramount importance to us. We are therefore preparing contingency measures against the potential spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Highfield Healthcare has over 300 beds, 30 day hospital places, and scores of people attending our outpatient department on a daily basis.

Therefore, if over the last 14 days, you have been in any of the affected areas identified by the Health Service Executive (HSE) and feel unwell or are displaying any symptoms such as a cough, high temperature, or shortness of breath, we would ask that you please avoid visiting our services to protect against the spread of the infection.

This request applies to:

  • Families/friends visiting elderly relatives in our nursing homes
  • Service users attending outpatient appointments in our OPD
  • Service users attending our mental health day hospital
  • Visitors of inpatient service users of our Hampstead Clinic.
  • Contractors coming on-site to carry out work.

At all times, our team take every necessary precaution to best protect the health and safety of all who come through our doors.

The HSE regularly updates its list of affected areas, which can be found here. We are advising service users and visitors to check this list regularly for any changes or additions, and for more information and updates on the coronavirus, areas affected by it and what to do if you think you might have had contact with it.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

IMT Interview with Dr Leena Naughton

“Now one of the country’s leading providers of mental health services, Highfield Healthcare, will open a new day hospital later this month in the same grounds where one of Ireland’s first-ever psychiatric hospitals was established almost 200 years ago. Peter Doyle reports;

“Highfield Healthcare is highly regarded for the provision of acute mental health treatment and care for adults and older persons with acute, serious and enduring mental health disorders and complex mental health issues associated with neuropsychiatric disorders and dementia,” one of its newest appointments, Consultant Psychiatrist Dr Leena Naughton, told Irish Medical Times (IMT).

“Highfield has a long-established history of providing care that is value-driven and underpinned by person-centeredness and quality,” added Dr Naughton, who joined the Highfield team last October.

Its vision to develop acute mental health services, she added, was being realised with a recent increase in the number of general adult inpatient beds and opening of a second day hospital.

“The organisation is now one of the leading providers of acute and specialist mental health services in Ireland and the only private service delivering the most innovative models of treatment and care in our Day Hospital,” continued Dr Naughton.

‘Long-established history’

Highfield’s “long-established history” can be traced to Dr John Eustace, a physician who worked at the Cork Street Fever Hospital but left his post in 1825 to set up one of Ireland’s first-ever hospitals for the mentally ill on farmland owned by his family in the Whitehall district of Dublin.

Dr Eustace was a Quaker and members of the Christian movement advocated a holistic approach when treating people who had been diagnosed with mental illness.

This philosophy, which was considered radical at the time, has remained central to Highfield Healthcare after the business was begun by Dr Eustace’s sons, John and Marcus, in the second half of the 19th Century.

As stated on Highfield’s website (, “the mentally ill have always been with us, but for no family is this truer than for the Eustace family”.

“While the treatment and care of mental illness is, in our day, accepted as one of the duties of a caring society, we must remember, that when John Eustace opened the doors of Hampstead Hospital in 1825, old attitudes were only beginning to change,” the Family History section of the website states.

“The mentally ill were still outcasts, still ‘lunatics’, the majority of them being treated with coercion and restraint. The State’s policy of providing asylums was only developing and it would be a long time before these became caring and therapeutic institutions.”

Caring and therapeutic institutions

Six generations later, the Eustace family runs four private healthcare services with a total of 150 beds, on the same site as the original hospital.

Almost four years ago, in November 2016; the Hampstead Clinic, which provides general adult mental health service, was expanded to include a Day Hospital service with capacity for 12 people.

Two years later, in October 2018, a 12-bed specialist rehabilitation unit (SRU) for people with severe and enduring mental illness was established. More recently, the acute general adult inpatient bed capacity was increased from 11 to 21 beds and a second day hospital opened on the campus.

Dr Naughton said it was envisaged that by 2025 “the configuration of mental health inpatient services will further divide to accommodate a higher volume of acute inpatient services by a reducing number of residents with long-stay mental health issues”.

Day hospital services will hopefully be relocated and/or developed within the community, she added.

Day hospital services

“It is envisaged that the development and recognition of Highfield Healthcare as a centre for learning with established affiliations to the various third level Institutions will be at an advanced stage and supported by state-of-the-art educational and training facilities on campus,” said Dr Naughton.

Key to Highfield‘s future plans is the new day hospital. “This will provide comprehensive psychiatric assessment, diagnosis and integrated treatment tailored to individual needs, and will be carried out by a multidisciplinary team led by a consultant psychiatrist,” explained Dr Naughton.

The range of therapies and activities on offer at the day hospital include a Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP), to help service users discover for themselves simple and safe wellness tools; psychoeducation, to help them understand their diagnosis, pharmacotherapy benefits and side effects and also the impact medicines have on day-to-day life.

Service users will also learn about decider skills, which can help them not only recognise their own thoughts, feelings and behaviours but also how best to monitor and manage them.

By addressing issues like distress tolerance, mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness and skills for emotional regulations, explained Dr Naughton, decider skills can help control impulsive behaviours such as self-harm, avoidance, and withdrawal. The new day hospital will also carry out social work assessments; occupational therapy assessments; family work, when needed; cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) group work and one-to-one sessions, if needed; and art and music therapy; and cookery skills also.

Treatment and management of patients

“I was attracted to Highfield Healthcare’s passion towards serving mental illness and dedication to patient care,” said Dr Naughton who completed her medical school training postgraduation in psychiatry in her native India.

“My approach to treatment and management of patients is focused on individualised needs and their complete recovery along with remission of their illness leading to social reintegration and improvement in quality of life,” she added.

“This treatment philosophy will be at the heart of my multidisciplinary team within the Hampstead inpatient unit and new Day Hospital services at Highfield Healthcare.”

Comprehensive experience/cross-cultural psychiatry

Shortly after completing her medical training in India, and before she travelled to Ireland to work for the Health Service Executive (HSE) as a Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr Naughton was part of the research team that carried out the largest epidemiological of Alzheimer’s disease in India.

“I gained comprehensive experience in general adult, child psychiatry, eating disorders, learning disability, addiction and forensic psychiatry through my basic and higher specialist training,” said Dr Naughton, who is fluent in four languages (English, Hindi, Marathi and Urdu). Being multilingual helps her assess patients from numerous backgrounds in their native tongue.

“My exposure to psychiatry in Ireland and India gave me valuable insight and understanding of cross-cultural psychiatry,” added Dr Naughton, who, as a senior registrar, worked as a lecturer at Trinity College Dublin as part of her training in forensic psychiatry.

“I have worked in various HSE services in General Adult Community Psychiatry, as a consultant psychiatrist which helped greatly in developing my approach to treatment, care, ways of working and leading a multidisciplinary team,” she continued.

“Community psychiatry involves day hospital; inpatient and outpatient work at various locations in the catchment area. As a consultant my focus always has been an holistic approach to achieve recovery rather than just remission of illness.”

Election manifesto

With the country on the verge of electing a new Government, the topic of health, including the provision of mental health services, has been a major talking point of the General Election 2020 campaign.

As part of its manifesto, Mental Health Reform (MHR) said Ireland’s mental health services were in a state of crisis and have “suffered from years of significant underinvestment, staffing shortages and access difficulties”.

MHR is calling for all election candidates to pledge substantial investment in Ireland’s mental health services, from 6 per cent of the overall health budget to at least 10 per cent.

The national coalition of organisations campaigning to transform mental health and well-being supports in Ireland also said that 24/7 access to crisis services across the country needs to be improved, while the Mental Health Act 2001 required reform to give adequate protection to people’s rights when they are in hospital for mental health treatment.

Dr Naughton also agreed that the State’s funding of mental health services at present was insufficient. “This is accepted by all stakeholders involved,” she said.

Access to mental health services was becoming more difficult, she continued, because “of unending waiting lists for specialist community care”.

“This causes anguish for those seeking treatment and a worsening of symptoms by the time they finally access our services, meaning increasing chronicity of the illness, their treatment is prolonged, with a poorer prognosis, and the knock-on effect for their caring families and friends,” added Dr Naughton. This, she said, will also impact negatively on waiting-list sizes for other service users trying to access the service because it was taking longer to stabilise and discharge patients.

“Early intervention shortens treatment time and thus opens up more opportunities for new patients,” she explained.

Staffing crisis

She also said the country’s politicians must address the use of recruitment embargoes by the HSE. Staffing levels were at “crisis point”, she said, because under-resourced services were unattractive to new entrants.

The existing pool of mental health professionals was being “cannibalised” by the system, she said, because staff were moving “from one sector to another to plug a hole, creating the same problem in the sector they have just left and the net result is no improvement in staffing levels.

“Recruitment of new professionals from outside the existing base must be a priority and making these opportunities attractive for applicants,” she said.

For referrals please contact or directly through Clanwilliam GP practice management software.” IMT

T2C Virtual Dementia Tour

Over the first two weeks in February, Highfield Healthcare were delighted to welcome Training 2 Care UK Ltd to provide an incredible training experience for our staff, volunteers and families.

The Virtual Dementia Tour is a scientifically and medically proven method of giving a person with a healthy brain the chance to experience what dementia might be like. Each session allows participants to enter the world of the person and understand which simple changes need to be made to their practice and environment to really improve lives of people with dementia.

Invented 25 years ago in America by Professor PK Beville and owned by Second Wind Dreams, Training 2 CARE are UK partners providing training across England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales.  The Virtual Dementia Tour has now been proven during research produced by Ulster University to change practice within 95% of participants, improve knowledge in 97% of participants and improve outcomes for 100% of clients.

Aware Life Skills Programme | February 2020

From the third of February, Highfield Healthcare will host the Aware Life Skills Programme for the second time. Based on the principles of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), the Life Skills Programmes are designed to help people learn more about how we think and how this can influence our actions in helpful or unhelpful ways.

The Life Skills Group Programme is delivered over the course of six weeks in 90 minute evening sessions, and is to be a proven useful resource for anyone who is experiencing symptoms of mild to moderate depression and/or anxiety.

We are incredibly grateful to the Dublin-Fingal Rotary Club, who have kindly funded these sessions to ensure it is accessible to everyone in the community.

The Life Skills Programme will take place on  Monday evening in the Hampstead Clinic Day Hospital and is open to people of all ages and backgrounds.

For more information on this programme visit

Mental Health Week 2019

In today’s’ world, 1 in 4 people will deal with mental illness in their lifetime. As Mental Health service providers, here at Highfield Healthcare, we are proud to support many individuals on their mental health journey. During Mental Health week, it is important to raise awareness about mental health and speak out in support of those experiencing difficulty. This year, we have undertaken a number of projects to do our bit.

For the second year in a row, Hot Press has teamed up with Lyons Tea and Pieta House for a special issue, which takes an in-depth look at the important issue of mental health. Here at Highfield Healthcare, we were delighted to get involved again, with Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr Miriam Kennedy detailing our newest initiative in partnership with Aware Ireland and Dublin Fingal Rotary Club. You can read the full article here; Highfield Healthcare Article | Hotpress 2019


World Mental Health Day falls on the 10th of October each year and is the perfect time to reflect on our own mental health. Below is a video we put together with the help of some of our staff members. We asked individual to share what things they do, in order to look after there mental health. Perhaps this might encourage you to examine what activities or occupations help you to relax and stay balanced?

Nursing Graduate Open Days | March 2019

Are you a recent or soon-to-be Nursing Graduate? Then we would love to meet you! 

Highfield Healthcare are hosting three Nursing Graduate Open Days through the month of March; an opportunity for prospective candidates to hear about our Graduate Programme, get to know the organisation and our people a little better.

WEDNESDAY 20th March, 11:00 until 16:00

WEDNESDAY 27th March, 11:00 until 16:00

THURSDAY 28th March, 11:00 until 16:00

We currently have openings for  Staff Nurses (RPN & RGN), Healthcare Assistants, Recovery Support Workers, and Psychology Graduates, as our services grow and evolve. Come along for an introduction to careers with Highfield Healthcare!

We have flexible working opportunities including full-time, part-time and relief opportunities, and we would love you to join our team.

We also welcome experienced RGNs, RPNs, CNMs and Allied Healthcare Professionals to attend. Please bring a copy of your CV for consideration.

If you have any questions about these event, or would simply like to enquire about careers at Highfield Healthcare, please get in touch with our HR department; email or call 01-837 4444.

Nursing Careers | Recruitment Open Day

Exciting Nursing Career Opportunities: Are you thinking of returning to Ireland or thinking about a new career for 2019?

Why not come along to our Recruitment Open Day on Thursday the 27th of December.

We have job opportunities for NURSES (RPN & RGN) throughout 2019.

Located on the Swords Road in Whitehall, Dublin 9, our Open Day will take place between 11am and 4pm.

Come along for an introduction to nursing careers with Highfield Healthcare, and remember to bring a copy of your CV with you for consideration.

For queries, call +353 1 837 4444 or email

World Mental Health Day 2018

 On the 10th of September each year, we celebrate World Mental Health Day. This year, Highfield Healthcare are delighted to be included in Hot Press magazine’s dedicated Mental Health Special Issue.

Nick Smith, Clinical Nurse Coordinator from our Day Hospital, spoke with the magazine about what is really means to be a client within this service.

With an aim to demystify the realities of mental health treatment in Ireland, Nick covers all aspects from being referred by a GP to the types of therapy being utilized here in Highfield Healthcare.

You can read the full feature by clicking on the image below or by picking up a copy of Hot Press, where you will find countless other stories and resources from the field of mental health.


Visitor Restrictions

****As per recent government guidelines, please do not travel into Highfield Healthcare if you are coming directly from countries not on the government's travel green list (and have not completed the mandatory restriction of movements for a 14 day period) as unfortunately you will not be allowed entry into the building.****

At Highfield Healthcare, the health, safety and wellbeing of our residents, patients, staff, volunteers and visitors is of paramount importance to us.  In line with government guidelines on easing visitor restrictions to residential care facilities, we are regularly updating our plans for all services and will keep families updated with any progress as to when you can visit your loved ones.

Please note we are unable to accommodate any unplanned visits.

For any general queries, please contact our Family Support Line on 01 8865449.

Communication with Residents

In line with guidance provided by NHI, we have set up access for face-to-face calls in order to facilitate communication through a screen during periods of restrictions.

Click here for more information.