Rotunda builds €1m mortuary before move
More than €1m will be spent redeveloping mortuary facilities at the Rotunda Hospital despite plans to move the maternity hospital from its city centre location in Dublin.
The major State investment is under way at the hospital because it says there is an ongoing need for post mortem examinations to ascertain the cause of deaths, miscarriages, and stillbirths.
However, Health Minister Leo Varadkar has already announced plans for the hospital to relocate to the Connolly Hospital campus in Blanchardstown.
The Rotunda will provide post mortem services for maternity units in the North East, specifically in Drogheda and Cavan.
"The new regional service is to be provided to all patients of the various hospitals in the region," a hospital spokesperson told the Irish Independent.
"It will help to inform medical staff and relevant patients about causes or issues surrounding pregnancy loss through miscarriages, stillbirth or neonatal deaths," he said.
"The information may give comfort of knowledge of the cause of the loss and may assist some parents in future family planning.
"This is a service that will immediately benefit all patients," he said.
The Rotunda is a key hospital in the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Hospital Group region and around 14,000 babies are born there every year.
According to the minutes of the February meeting of the Rotunda Hospital Board obtained by the 'Medical Independent', the mortuary is due to be ready later this year.
The timeframe for when The Rotunda would re-locate to the campus at Connolly Hospital, Blanchardstown is not yet decided.
"Funding for the project is yet to be identified and agreed by the Government," the spokesperson said.
"From a best practice perspective, this new service should be provided to mothers and their babies as soon as is practicable."