Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Questions (52)

Clare Daly

Question:

52. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health the status of the geographical accessibility of termination of pregnancy services; the locations in which ultrasound scanning is provided; if hospitals are operating catchment areas for the provision of termination of pregnancy services; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11792/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Two hundred and ninety-four (294) GPs have signed the contract to provide a termination of pregnancy service and more GPs are signing up as the service evolves. The HSE is satisfied that there is a good geographic spread of GPs taking part, enough to meet the needs of people who may need to access the service. In consultation with GPs, a decision was made to make participating GP details available by calling the ‘My Options’ helpline, rather than publishing a list of GPs. Due to GP availability and capacity to take additional patients, not all 294 GPs are on the ‘My Options’ list at any one time.

All maternity hospitals are providing some level of termination of pregnancy services, with 10 hospitals providing terminations in early pregnancy (up to 12 weeks), as follows:

Ireland East Hospital Group

1. National Maternity Hospital - Holles Street

2. Midland Regional Hospital Mullingar

RCSI Hospital Group

3. Rotunda Hospital

4. Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda

Dublin Midlands Hospital Group

5. Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital

Saolta Hospital Group

6. University Hospital Galway

7. Mayo University Hospital

University of Limerick Hospitals

8. University Maternity Hospital Limerick 

South/South West Hospital Group

9. Cork University Maternity Hospital

10. University Hospital Waterford

The matter of catchment area is no longer an issue for the Rotunda or the Coombe. The catchment area issue for the National Maternity Hospital is to be addressed by the Group CEO of Ireland East Hospital Group.

A private provider is currently providing ultrasound scans, for termination of pregnancy, in Letterkenny, Cork and Dublin. Outside of these locations, ultrasound scans are being provided by the local maternity hospital.

There is regular ongoing engagement between the Department of Health and the HSE to facilitate the smooth-running of the termination of pregnancy service and to resolve any issues that may arise.