Thursday, 19 September 2019

Questions (123)

Barry Cowen


123. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Health the stage the national children’s hospital higher education elements project is at; when the project will go out for tender; when construction will commence; when the project will be completed; the estimated cost of the project; the amount spent to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [38084/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The new children’s hospital and satellite centres will provide the setting for educating upcoming generations of paediatricians, paediatric-scientists, nurses and other paediatric healthcare professionals in Ireland. As the major centre for paediatric education and training in the Irish health service, the hospital and satellite centres will bring together existing paediatric education programmes into one academic health sciences network.  

The hospital will have associations with seven universities and will play a vital role in furthering professional education and this is reflected in the provision of dedicated education facilities. Education and training will include undergraduate and postgraduate campus training for medical, nursing and health and social care professional staff, continuous professional development of all clinical staff groups, acquisition and rehearsal of clinical skills, including simulated practice and delivery of educational programmes for students and visiting staff. There is also potential for international and cross-border education in, for example, certain disease areas where Ireland has particular expertise or high incidence, such as cystic fibrosis.

The Final Project Brief for the new children’s hospital includes the full cost of the third level education facilities as part of the Exchequer funding requirement. Education facilities will be located within the new children’s hospital and will be built as part of the core hospital build. The hospital school will be located in a central area within the hospital building with direct horizontal and vertical links to the inpatient units. Higher education space will be integral to the main building and will include lecture theatres, seminar rooms and tutorial rooms.

In relation to the specific issues raised by the Deputy such as timelines etc as this is a operational matter, I have asked the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) to respond to the Deputy directly.