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Dáil Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 27 Nov 1973

Vol. 269 No. 4

Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - New Dental Hospital.


asked the Minister for Education when it is proposed to build the new dental hospital in Dublin; and where it will be sited.

I stated in reply to a question on 12th July, 1973, that no decisions fundamentally affecting the future provision to be made for dental education in the country have been or will be made until the recommendations of the Higher Education Authority in the matter as contained in their Report on University Reorganisation have been fully considered and until positive proposals have been formulated and approved by the Government.

I have nothing to add to that statement at present.

Can the Minister give any indication when the process he has described is likely to be completed?

This is not a matter within the Minister's competence because it is a matter for the Higher Education Authority. I am unable to give any timetable as to when the report on this particular question will be received.

In view of the Minister's statement that it is not within the Minister's competence to decide, will the Minister regard the report of the Higher Education Authority with some degree of, I will not say suspicion but apprehension, in case by any chance dental education is to be concentrated in the city of Dublin in view of the fact that there is already a viable dental centre in Cork city.

I said that it was not within the Minister's competence to say when the Higher Education Authority would report. I do not know what his view on the report will be in relation to dental schools or dental hospitals in Dublin or Cork. It is something that must await the decision of the Higher Education Authority.

Is there any report from the Higher Education Authority which seems to suggest that dental education should be concentrated in Dublin alone?

I understand that that suggestion was made. I do not know whether it was made by the Higher Education Authority. It may possibly have come from dental or medical sources. I gather that the Minister is waiting for a comprehensive report from the education authority before making any decision on the location of the new dental school.

Will the Minister convey to his colleague the concern of many people about the danger of moving dental education from Cork city to Dublin?

I have heard that danger mentioned elsewhere.