Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that the issue was complex PA
Dying with dignity

Dying with Dignity bill needs more 'teasing out', says Taoiseach

The Dying with Dignity Bill was tabled by People Before Profit TD Gino Kenny.

TAOISEACH MICHEÁL MARTIN has said that the Dying with Dignity Bill needs a further “teasing out”, following the death of prominent CervicalCheck campaigner Vicky Phelan.

Speaking this afternoon, Martin said that the Bill is currently being examined, with it due to be scrutinised at a special Oireachtas Committee.

When asked specifically if it would be implemented within the lifetime of the current Government, Martin said that it is currently being examined by the Oireachtas.

The special Committee was initially expected to begin last month, after its formation had been agreed in July 2021.

The Dying with Dignity Bill, which was tabled by People Before Profit TD Gino Kenny, initially passed through the Dáil in 2020.

Martin told reporters today that it was a “very complex issue”.

“I think, again, that [Dying with Dignity bill] is being examined but there are different perspectives on that,” said Martin.

“It is a very complex issue and I do know that Vicky was very strongly of the view that should come in, that that facility should be there.

“It’s a work in progress but there are different approaches to it.”

Martin said that there were different approaches to it and that there needed to be as many people as possible involved in the conversation around Dying with Dignity.

It comes as the Taoiseach also confirmed that the Patient Safety Bill, which will require mandatory open disclosure of serious patient safety issues, would be back before the Dáil in “early December”.

Phelan had called for open disclosure previously, with legislation on the matter being considered as early as 2015.

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly had previously told the Oireachtas Health Committee that the “overarching intention” of the bill was to embed and support a culture of open disclosure.

Under the bill itself, a list of patient safety issues would be set out and which must be reported to the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA).

“This Bill will lead to a safer better health service by placing patients and their needs front and centre,” Donnelly told the Committee earlier this year.

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