Saturday 25 January 2020

Gilmore puts spotlight on Reilly after report into Savita death

Michael Brennan

EAMON Gilmore has said that the report into the death of Savita Halappanavar does not spare any level of the health service - from the ward to the office of Health Minister Dr James Reilly.

He said that the "shocking" HIQA report needed to be fully implemented to ensure that there was safe care for  women giving birth around the country.

But at Leader's Questions, he put the spotlight on Dr Reilly's department by calling for action to be taken to fully implement the report.

"This report doesn't spare any level of the health service from the ward to the minister's office," he said.

At Leader's Questions in the Dail, Mr Gilmore also controversially suggested that the issue of whether the country should have 19 maternity hospitals needed to be addressed. He challenged the opposition to say what their response would be if Dr Reilly announced a reduction in the number of maternity hospitals so that they would be better staffed and better equipped.

"Let's ask in all honesty, what is the response going to be?" he said.

Fianna Fáil health spokesman Billy Kelleher said the HIQA report showed that five out of the 19 maternity hospitals had not implemented recommendations from a report into the death during childbirth of Tanya McCabe in Louth in 2007.

And Sinn Fein deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald said the Government had to give reassurances to women that it would provide the extra resources needed by maternity hospitals. hospitals.

Mr Gilmore said that resources were always an issue. But he said he did not believe they could be an issue in all 13 opportunities identified by HIQA where the health service could have intervened to save Ms Halappanavar's life

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