Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Questions (616, 617)

Aengus Ó Snodaigh

Question:

616. Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Health when he expects the first sod to be turned on the National Paediatric Hospital in the St James's Hospital complex, Dublin; and the expected design, build and commissioning timeframe of the project. [30720/13]

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Aengus Ó Snodaigh

Question:

617. Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Health in view of the delays in getting the National Paediatric Hospital in the St James's Hospital complex, Dublin, to design, planning permission stage, if consideration is being given to reverting to the Coombe Hospital bid to have it built on lands adjacent to it, while at the same time building the proposed new National Maternity Hospital. [30721/13]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 616 and 617 together.

On 6 November last, I announced the Government's decision to locate the new children's hospital on the St James's campus. This completed consideration on the location of the hospital. Co-location, and ultimately tri-location with a maternity hospital, on the St James's campus will support the provision of excellence in clinical care that our children deserve.

The National Paediatric Hospital Development Board is the body with statutory responsibility for building the new children's hospital. Since the current Board was appointed in January, it has focused on a number of key issues. These include reconciliation of the design brief with the new site, site preparation and new procurement processes. The overall aim at this stage of the project is to secure planning permission by December 2014.

Work on developing a detailed project timeline beyond 2014 is continuing, recognising the urgency and priority attached to the project, as well as its scale and complexity. This is a very large and very complex capital project, and is of huge importance for the provision of acute paediatric services for all children in Ireland. I am determined to ensure that it is completed as swiftly as possible, with optimal design and value for money.