“Cabinet sign off on Children’s Hospital will prove a catastrophic error of judgement,” Mattie McGrath
Independent TD Mattie McGrath has called on the Taoiseach and senior government Minister’s to delay Cabinet approval for the controversial siting of the National Children’s Hospital at St James in Dublin. Deputy McGrath made his appeal ahead of a Cabinet meeting today where final approval is expected to be given following a delay due to fears around the exorbitant cost of the project:
“Those of us who have tried to highlight the enormous deficiencies of this project remain convinced that the Cabinet is about to make one of the costliest mistakes of any government since the ill-fated bank bailout.
However, the greater cost will be found in the damage this project will bring about as it denies an accessible and lifesaving location to the majority of sick children in this State who live outside the M50.
We know that there has been a concerted campaign of misinformation and misinterpretation regarding the viability of this site and that the concerns of parents have either been minimised or ignored.
Recently the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) came before members of the Oireachtas in Leinster House and told us that concerns around the inability of the Coastguard Sikorsky Helicopter to land at the new hospital were redundant because the Sikorsky cannot land at any hospital regardless of location.
I followed this up with a PQ and was explicitly informed that was untrue and that the Sikorsky is specifically licensed to land at hospitals across the state.
It is this kind of misleading information that has been put in to the public domain in an attempt to vitiate the concerns of the parents and those groups like Jack&Jill and Connolly4Kids who have major reservations around the capacity of the Children’s hospital to deliver optimal clinical outcomes.
The Minister must realise that if he proceeds with this project then the possibility of a Judicial Review is extremely likely.
I would therefore call on him to delay signing off on this project and to meet, at least once, with the parents and groups who have the backing of this state’s leading Paediatric Consultants in their opposition to the St James’ site,” concluded Deputy McGrath.