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Dublin: 3 °C Wednesday 26 November, 2014

Taoiseach says Ireland is ‘one of the safest places on the planet’ to have a baby

Enda Kenny was speaking in the Dáil today about the national review of maternity services which he said will help maintain our reputation as a good place to have a baby.

Image: Julien Behal/PA

TAOISEACH ENDA KENNY has said the national examination of maternity services in Ireland will help to ensure Ireland keep its reputation as “one of the safest places on the planet” to have a child.

It was announced yesterday that a review of these services in the West/North West Hospitals Group has been suspended and it will now form part of the national review. In the Dáil today, Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin questioned the Taoiseach about the terms of reference for the review, and said the public is “entitled to see them”.

He added that some people working in maternity services would say that “immediate intervention now to upgrade staffing levels” is needed, pointing out that it was “not long ago that leading practitioners were saying they are not safe”.

In response, Kenny said it is important for women to be confident that they were receiving services “of the highest integrity”. He said this review and improvements made as a result would help to “keep up our reputation as one of the safest countries in the world for childbirth”.

He agreed that there should be a public consultation process and that the terms of reference should be published. However he did not give any indication of when this might be done.

Read: Review of maternity services shelved in wake of hospital chair’s resignation>

Read: Chairman of West/Northwest Hospital Group resigns over ‘conflict of interest’ >

More: James Reilly denies there was conflict of interest in maternity services review >

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