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spinal surgery

HSE boss apologises to children and parents impacted by spinal surgeries crisis

Gloster said the reports about the use of unauthorised springs in operations on children are “most concerning”.

HSE CHIEF EXECUTIVE Bernard Gloster has today apologised to the children and parents impacted by the spinal injuries scandal.

Speaking before the Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee (PAC), Gloster said the reports about the use of unauthorised springs in operations on children are “most concerning”.

He said the two Children’s Health Ireland reports, along with the internal and Boston report on the treatment of children with spina bifida and scoliosis “are concerning at the higher end of the scale”.

Gloster said the revelations has “seriously damaged confidence” in this area of the healthcare system.

“To the parents, advocate groups, and most importantly, the children, I want to apologise and I want to give my assurance as CEO that these matters will be fully examined and responded to as part of the independent expert review commissioned by the HSE,” he said.

Gloster added that a UK based orthopedic surgeon will carry out that independent review.  Two CHI-commissioned internal and external reviews have also been carried out into procedures at Temple Street.

The internal CHI review and the Boston review looked at the clinical outcomes of a specific group of patients with spina bifida. Both concluded that there was a higher rate of complications than expected. They also raised questions around culture and governance.

That reviews were triggered by serious concerns around the post-operative outcomes of several children with serious spinal conditions who had been operated on by a surgeon at Temple Street. The surgeon is no longer performing operations.

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