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Construction work ceases at National Children's Hospital site

The contractors had been criticised for continuing construction at the site after new government guidelines.

Image: Eamonn Farrell

THE CONSTRUCTION COMPANY for the new National Children’s Hospital at St James’ has ceased building work, following new government guidelines this week.

BAM was criticised for continuing construction on the National Children’s Hospital site, despite the government instructing that all non-essential work cease to slow the spread of Covid-19.

The company yesterday said it sought clarity on whether construction on the Children’s Hospital counted as essential work, but hadn’t received clarification yet.

Today Rise TD Paul Murphy said a number of workers from the site wold him work was winding, adding that this was “clearly non-essential work”.

In a statement this evening, BAM said it received confirmation from its client, the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) that work on the hospital is not considered essential construction services in the current COVID-19 crisis.

“BAM welcomes this important clarification which it has sought over a number of days and work ceased immediately upon its receipt.

“BAM continues to undertake separate COVID-19 related work on the main St. James’s hospital campus at the request of the hospital management as well as some essential motorway maintenance and Facilities Management work around the country. 

“In these it is operating to the strictest of safety procedures for all workers.”

The company said it has followed all official government and HSE guidelines in relation to the operation of its sites and has had the welfare of its staff and contractors as its top priority.

Minister for Health Simon Harris has said most construction is not considered an essential service under new government guidelines, unless they are building something that is essential to this pandemic. 

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