Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Questions (2742)

John Brady


2742. Deputy John Brady asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if she will consider making provision for deaths that occur before 24 weeks gestation to be registered in circumstances in which this is sought by the family; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [33054/19]

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Written answers (Question to Employment)

I am conscious that this issue can be the cause of significant impact to those parents and families who are in such circumstances.

I have met recently with individuals affected by this issue and I have been in contact with Féileacán, the Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Association of Ireland, with a view to arranging to meet with them following submission of proposals that they have made.

The weight and term limits of 500 grams and 24 weeks referenced are based on those developed by the World Health Organisation. Accordingly, I have also written to my colleague, the Minister for Health, in this matter to seek the views of experts in this area. I am advised that the Neonatal Clinical Advisory Group in the HSE is preparing a position paper in relation to the classification of perinatal death and that publication of this is expected shortly.

The progression of these processes will facilitate informed further consideration of the issues when complete.