Dáil debates

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business


3:20 pm

Photo of Peadar TóibínPeadar Tóibín (Meath West, Sinn Fein) | Oireachtas source

I raise the tragic case of the family who were recommended by the National Maternity Hospital, Holles Street to have an abortion without a diagnostic test or without one of the medical practitioners even meeting the mother. The Minister for Health has been sitting on this information for four weeks, the Attorney General has been briefed and the family has sat with the chief medical officer for hours. It has been stated, however, that the Government knows nothing of this matter. It has also been stated that this is a private issue. That contradicts the wishes of the family, who have asked me to bring it into the public domain in order to ensure that it will never happen again. In section 20 of the Government legislation, and I paraphrase, it is stated no later than 28 days after the abortion has been carried out, the medical practitioner who performed it shall forward a record of the abortion to the Minister for Health. The termination of a healthy baby was completed on 14 March. The record should have been with the Minister for Health by 12 April but did not happen. I understand that no record of the abortion was sent by the hospital to the Minister until after the solicitor for the family raised this shocking case. This is another clear breach of the law. What is worse is that the Minister has known about this breach for more than a month and has done nothing to challenge the hospital regarding this illegal act. This leads to a number of serious questions-----


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