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Temple St chair backs Harney in hospital row

Row over co-location intensifies as Donal Walsh backs Harney’s selection of Mater site.

Temple St children's hospital
Temple St children's hospital
Image: geograph.ie - creative commons

THE CHAIRMAN OF Temple St Children’s Hospital has said he supports the Mater site for the new Children’s hospital in Dublin.

Donal Walsh stated that the construction of a new hospital is “hugely important and a necessary initiative” for healthcare in Ireland.

Walsh came out strongly in support of Harney’s decision to stand behind her decision to co-locate the national paediatric hospital.

“It is imperative to combine the services of the three existing national paediatric hospitals. The new Children’s Hospital of Ireland will be at the centre of a national paediatric network, linked to regional and local hospitals and to primary and community services.”

Former chief of the National Paediatric Hospital Philip Lynch resigned last week, but a row has since broken out over the reasons for his resignation.

Lynch says that funding and planning concerns surrounding the proposed hospital were the main reason for his resignation.

“My decision to resign was my own,” said Lynch. “In my letter of resignation, I stated there were fundamental differences between the minister and myself on the need for open and informed discussion at board level, at all times, on a range of issues relating to the hospital.”

“I informed the minister that, on the basis of the significant and fundamental differences, the appropriate course of action was to resign.”

But Minister for Health Mary Harney contradicted that reason and said that she asked Lynch to leave his post. Taoiseach Brian Cowen backed Harney’s decision, affirming that the project is not in doubt and will proceed as planned.

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