National Maternity Hospital must be fully state owned – O’Reilly
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Health Louise O’Reilly TD has said while she welcomed the Sisters of Charity decision to relinquish ownership of St Vincent's Healthcare Group, the outworking cannot be that the ownership of the new National Maternity Hospital is instead transferred to a newly-formed company with ‘charitable status’.
Deputy O’Reilly said:
“While both I and Sinn Féin welcome welcomed the Religious Sisters of Charity decision to relinquish ownership of St Vincent's Healthcare Group, and thereby the new National Maternity Hospital, we cannot stand over a situation whereby the state gives away a €300million State asset to a newly-formed company with ‘charitable status’.
“Such a situation is absolutely ludicrous.
“While the good news that there will be no religious interference in this hospital may obfuscate what has really happened here, I for one will continue to demand that the National Maternity Hospital stays completely in state ownership.
“The opposition of the grassroots movement and of political parties to the situation around the National Maternity Hospital was always twofold - that there be no religious interference in the operations of the new National Maternity Hospital, and that the hospital stay in state ownership.
“However, only one of these demands was met today. Therefore, the fight will go on to ensure that our new National Maternity Hospital stays completely in state control.
“This evening, I am calling on Minister Simon Harris to honour the Sinn Féin motion which was passed by the Dáil earlier this month which, in part, called on the Government to: ‘Ensure the new National Maternity Hospital is built on the St. Vincent’s Hospital campus as quickly as possible, remains entirely within public ownership and has legally guaranteed independence from all non-medical influence in its clinical operations’.
“Fine Gael may still be happy to gift a €300million state asset to the men and women of property via a newly-formed company with ‘charitable status’, but those of us who see the dangers of such a move will continue to protest this decision and fight for full state ownership as to which Dáil has already voted in favour.”