THE HEALTH SERVICE Executive said it hopes to finalise the terms of reference for its inquiry into the death of Savita Halappanavar as soon as possible and they may be announced later today.
A spokesperson for the HSE told TheJournal.ie that the details will be made public as soon as they are settled.
The death of the 31-year-old woman University Hospital Galway last month has been subject to massive national and international attention over the past seven days. She was 17 weeks pregnant when she presented to the hospital with back pain on 21 October. She died a week later after contracting blood poisoning following a miscarriage that lasted for three days. Her husband Praveen says her requests for a medical termination were refused by staff.
The HSE has already confirmed that an international expert in obstetrics and gynaecology to join the six-person inquiry team. They have also said that Savita’s next-of-kin – her husband Praveen – will be consulted.
It is understood the panel will be asked to report within a three-month time frame. Its key task will be to investigate whether earlier medical intervention would have saved her life.
Over the weekend, Savita’s father Andanappa Yalagi made a personal plea to Enda Kenny to change the law on abortion in Ireland. He told an Indian newspaper that he plans to take legal action against the hospital.
The Taoiseach has not responded specifically to the family’s remarks but said a comprehensive investigation into the circumstances surrounding her death will be made known to Government as soon as possible.
He added that the Cabinet is now examining the report of the expert group who looked at the European Court of Human Rights judgement in relation to the ABC versus Ireland case.