"Independence of HIQA is being placed in the dock" - Ó Caoláin
Sinn Féin Health Spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD has commented on the HSE’s threat to block a report into the deaths of five babies in Portlaoise hospital. HSE Director General Tony O'Brien told HIQA that its draft findings in relation to Portlaoise Hospital implied a reckless endangerment of patients.
Deputy Ó Caoláin said;
“The independence of HIQA, on whom there is an absolute dependency on the part of service users to fully ensure highest standards and best compliance at all times, is being placed in the dock. HIQA must remain totally independent and to be able to investigate and report on services across the state without bodies it is charged to investigate going to the courts.
“I am concerned at the attitude that the HSE has taken in this case where rather than being open to criticism it has decided to attempt to consider court intervention to change or supress a report. The HSE should, of course, be given a right of reply but if HIQA has made a report, it should be published, it should be seen, whether critical in its content or not.
“This must be a time of compounded concern for those families directly impacted by those issues raised at Port Laoise and at other maternity settings across the country and our thoughts are with them once again” concluded Deputy Ó Caoláin.