Site of new Children’s Hospital to be confirmed in 4 weeks
An independent review into the feasibility of building the planned new National Children’s Hospital at the Mater Hospital site will be completed within the next four weeks, it was announced today.
The review team, comprised of architect John Cooper and four international clinical experts, will analyse all aspects of the project including the verification of costs and whether the hospital could be built in a different location, Health Minister Dr James Reilly said.
The new €650m National Children's Hospital is due to open at the Mater site in 2015 and €30m has already been spent on the site.
Plans were thrown in further disarray earlier today when it emerged that project’s chief executive Eilish Hardiman had resigned to take up the position as chief executive of Tallaght Hospital. She will take up her new post in August.
Two chairmen of the development board have already quit their positions. John Gallagher resigned as chair of the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) in March saying he felt he no longer had a mandate to continue with his remit to build the facility at the Mater site.
In his resignation letter, he said the Government and Minister Reilly were not in a position to grant such a mandate to him. Earlier in March the Minister announced his intention to conduct his own review into the location of the hospital.
After his resignation the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) said it remained committed to the delivery of a world-class National Children’s Hospital on the Mater Campus, despite the resignation.
Gallagher had only been appointed as Chairman of the NPHDB last October, following the resignation of Philip Lynch in October 2010. It later emerged that former Health Minister Mary Harney had sought the resignation
There is growing speculation that plans to build the hospital may be unravelling, with a growing number of medical practitioners who specialise in paediatrics coming out against the development.