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Investigation after another newborn baby dies at Cavan Hospital

The newborn baby died at the maternity unit in the hospital on Tuesday afternoon.

Image: Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland

Updated: 16.15

AN INVESTIGATION HAS started after a newborn baby died at Cavan General Hospital.

The HSE has given few details into the case, but has confirmed that the baby died at the hospital’s maternity unit on Tuesday afternoon.

The hospital has previously been at the centre of controversy over the standard of care in its maternity unit  after three babies died between 2012 and 2014, two of them within the space of less than a month.

In a statement, the HSE expressed its sympathy to the family and said a full review into the circumstances surrounding the case would take place “as is normal practice”.

“Cavan and Monaghan Hospital management would like to offer its deepest sympathy to the family on their tragic loss and hope they will be given the privacy that they need to deal with their grief,” the statement read.

“The hospital will give the family every assistance and support required”.

Leinster House

Both Micheál Martin and Gerry Adams raised the issue in the Dáil today.

In May 2014 the then Health Minister James Reilly wrote to the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa) asking the body to look into maternity services at Cavan Hospital as well as at the Midlands Hospital in Portlaoise.

During Leaders’ Questions, Martin questioned why no formal order was made to Hiqa to investigate the unit and no review took place.

Some people would say it’s quite a scandal that no action followed, from what I can see, the Savita Halappanavar inquiry.

Kenny said Health Minister Leo Varadkar has accepted all eight recommendations from the Hiqa report into Portlaoise, which he described as “clear, stark and disturbing”.

Varadkar met with parents of babies who died at the hospital today.

Minister Vists Portlaoise Hospital. Min Varadkar in Portlaoise today Source: Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland

Kenny said the health minister is going to establish a national women and infants health programme to improve maternity services in the country’s 19 maternity units.

When Adams claimed that Hiqa recommendations are “being continually ignored by the HSE and the Department of Health”, Kenny said: “I do accept that the imperative now is to implement the recommendations.”

- with reporting by Órla Ryan

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