Written answers

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Department of Health

National Children's Hospital

Photo of Catherine MurphyCatherine Murphy (Kildare North, Independent)
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150. To ask the Minister for Health if he will provide the business case for the siting of the proposed national children's hospital at St. James's Hospital; the advantages that site has which were the overriding factors in choosing to site the hospital there; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46592/14]

Photo of Leo VaradkarLeo Varadkar (Dublin West, Fine Gael)
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Following the refusal in 2012 of planning permission for the new children’s hospital at the Mater campus, Minister James Reilly TD established the Dolphin Group to review the options and make recommendations on next steps. The Group was not asked to select a site. The Dolphin Report was consistent with all previous reports on the new children’s hospital in concluding that co-location with an adult teaching hospital was essential, and tri-location with a maternity hospital was optimal. It concluded that, from a clinical and academic perspective, St James’s Hospital best met the criteria to be the adult partner in co-location. It has the broadest range of national specialties of all acute hospitals, as well as strong and well established research and education infrastructure. Co-location, and ultimately tri-location with a maternity hospital, on the St James's campus will support the provision of excellence in clinical care that our children deserve.

In making its decision, the Government considered the Dolphin Report as well as further detailed supplementary information on cost, time and planning which was sought from members of the Dolphin Group with the relevant technical expertise. The Government decision to locate the new children's hospital on the St James's campus was announced on 6 November 2012. The Dolphin report and the supplementary planning assessment were made available on the website of the Department of Health following the Government decision, as were submissions to the Dolphin Group.

Ireland's Children deserve a world class hospital. We have been promising it, and talking about it for too long now. It is time to build it.


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