Written answers

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Department of Health

Maternity Services Provision

Photo of Louise O'ReillyLouise O'Reilly (Dublin Fingal, Sinn Fein)
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465. To ask the Minister for Health the status of the proposed maternity hospital to be co-located at the St. James’s Hospital site; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3075/19]

Photo of Simon HarrisSimon Harris (Wicklow, Fine Gael)
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The model of stand-alone maternity hospitals is not the norm internationally.  In line with the National Maternity Strategy, Government policy is to co-locate all remaining maternity hospitals with adult acute hospitals in order to provide optimal clinical outcomes.  Co-location of maternity services with adult services provides mothers with access to a full range of medical and support services should the need arise. The ready availability of these services helps ensure the delivery of an optimum, safe service, particularly for high risk mothers and babies. 

The National Maternity Strategy reaffirms the commitment to the provision of maternity services on the St James's Campus.   I am confident that the tri-location of adult, children’s and maternity services at St James’s will create a centre of healthcare excellence for patients of all ages.

The project to relocate the Coombe Women & Infants University Hospital to the St James's site is at an early stage and has yet to progress to planning and design phases.  Construction of the new children's hospital is currently underway on the St James’s site and construction of the new maternity hospital will not commence until after the new children's hospital is completed.  I can confirm, however, that the new children's hospital design has incorporated the required operational links with both the maternity and adult hospitals, and that a site for the proposed maternity hospital is identified in the St James's Campus Master Plan.


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