The controversial term “clinically appropriate” will remain in the constitution of the new National Maternity Hospital, but a government memo on Tuesday, when the cabinet approves the project, will say the procedures are legal.
The Cabinet memo will state that clinically reasonable procedures include all legally permissible procedures in the areas of maternity, obstetrics, gynecology and gender reassignment.
However, interventions such as cardiac or orthopedic operations are not allowed in the new hospital.
The cabinet memo also commits to establishing a center of excellence on women’s health, which will advise the government on women’s health issues.
The National Clinical Director of the new national women’s and infant health program will be asked to submit a proposal for the establishment of the centre.
Tourism Secretary and Green Party Deputy Leader Catherine Martin has campaigned for such a center and discussed the proposal with Health Secretary Stephen Donnelly last week.
With the deal due to be signed by Cabinet on Tuesday, her Green Party colleague Neasa Hourigan reiterated the opposition’s calls for it to be put on hold.
“All transactions are built on trust – trust that currently doesn’t exist. This is not only due to the participation of the St. Vincent’s Group, but also to the highly entrepreneurial nature of this transaction. My concerns are at least as much about property value and Sláintecare as Catholicism,” the Dublin Central TD and party health spokesman said on Twitter tonight.
She said the decision would be presented to cabinet and a car park would be built on the site before a business case was presented.
Ms Hourigan said there had been no accountability to the Oireachtas and that it was not for the first time that the Department of Health was “a law unto itself”.
“I reiterate the need to declassify all relevant legal documents related to transfers of shares from one company to another and either remove ‘clinically appropriate’, clarify it or add rights-based language to the documents to inform recipients of services to protect,” she said.
“The NMH not only needs to provide these services, it needs to be a center of excellence for abortion, as for many people this is an integral part of maternal care. If it is to go further, the NMH, the department and the SVHG should set up a professorship in the hospital for this purpose.
“Eventually, much of the complexity of this deal could be avoided with a hospital model that’s more publicly owned and operated. This is our national maternity hospital – worth adopting the procurement, governance model and private sector interaction from the start.”
Taoiseach Micheál Martin said earlier today that the move of the new NMH from Holles Street to the St Vincent campus is proceeding as planned.
Mr Martin said the phrase “clinically appropriate” would not be removed from the legal documents.
He spoke as Cabinet ministers are set to sign the deal tomorrow after agreeing a two-week delay to give further assurances.
“We have not made any changes to the legal documents, the legal documents have been agreed between the three parties, the HSE, the National Maternity Hospital and St Vincent’s Holdings,” he said.
“The legal documents are there, if you read the legal documents, they are very, very clear.”
The Taoiseach said it was “very, very clear” that “all the services permitted by law” would be provided at the hospital.
“The documents are very clear on this and the legal advice we have received, the Attorney General is very, very clear on the constitution of the new hospital,” he said.
The Taoiseach said the agreement had a lot of “strength and substance”.
St. Vincent’s Holdings, the charity that owns St. Vincent’s Hospital and the lands on which the new NMH will be built, previously told the Oireachtas Health Committee that two different landowners on the site pose a “significant risk” to patient care would.
https://www.independent.ie/news/term-clinically-appropriate-to-remain-in-new-nmh-constitution-as-cabinet-to-finally-sign-off-on-tuesday-41655215.html Micheál Martin says the contract with the National Maternity Hospital will continue without changes