As the Deputy will be aware, following the finalisation of the Mulvey Agreement in November 2016, concerns were raised regarding the need to protect the State's significant investment in the new hospital, in circumstances where the new hospital will be built on a voluntary hospital campus. In that context, considerable work has been undertaken to develop a legal framework that ensures that the new hospital will remain in State ownership.
My Department continues to engage with the St Vincent’s Healthcare Group, the National Maternity Hospital and the HSE to develop a legal framework to protect the State’s significant investment in the new hospital. The St Vincent’s Healthcare Group has agreed in principle to provide the State with a 99-year lease of the land upon which the new maternity hospital will be built, and this will allow the State to retain ownership of the new facility. The State will, in turn, provide an Operating Licence to the NMH DAC and the St Vincent’s Healthcare Group to enable the provision of health services in the newly constructed building.
The overall framework being put in place will unequivocally copper-fasten the principle that patient care in the new hospital will be delivered without religious, ethnic or other distinction and that any medical procedure which is in accordance with the laws of the land will be carried out there.