I have met with members of the NPHDB, including a visit to the new children hospital site on 28th August 2019 and most recently a meeting with the Chair and Chief Officer of the NPHDB on 18th November 2019.
I am updated on a regular basis on developments relating to the new children's hospital by Departmental officials through the oversight channels detailed below. Department officials engage with the NPHDB on an on-going basis in relation to any relevant issues arising including areas such as ICT, equipping, communication and milestone events organisation. Department officials also engage on an on-going basis with the NPHDB in relation to other NPHDB matters such as NPHDB membership, staffing and annual accounts. There are also formal meetings that Department officials and the NPHDB Project Director of the NPHDB attend which are outlined below.
The Children’s Hospital Project and Programme (CHP&P) Board is chaired by the Secretary General of the Department of Health and membership is comprised of officials from my Department and the HSE as follows: Assistant Secretary of the Acute Hospital Policy Division in the Department of Health, the Director General of the HSE and the HSE Deputy Director General Strategy (DDG). The Project Director of the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board (NPHDB) also attends CHP&P Board meetings. The CHP&P Board held its first meeting in September 2017 and monitors the progress of the CHP&P against the agreed parameters of the programme in relation to timeline, scope and funding.
The CHP&P Board has met at least every quarter since its establishment. 12 Meetings have taken place as follows: 14th September 2017, 12th December 2017, 17th January 2018, 14th March 2018, 20th June 2018, 19th September 2018, 16th November 2018, 11th December 2018, 18th December 2018, 1st April 2019, 2nd July 2019 and 12th October 2019. In relation to communications with the NPHDB, in addition to CHP&P Board a Children’s Hospital Project and Programme (CHP&P) Steering Group is in place to direct the overall programme of work. Department officials and the NPHDB Project Director are members of the CHP&P Steering Group. The Steering Group reports to the CHP&P Board and the Chair of the CHP&P Steering Group presents a report to the CHP&P Board meetings setting out any issues that need to be considered or decided at CHP&P Board level.
The Steering Group was established in May 2017 and has met 24 times to date as follows: 26th May 2017, 29th August 2017, 20th October 2017, 22nd November 2017, 25th January 2018, 26th February 2018, 26th March 2018, 23rd April 2018, 31st May 2018, 25th June 2018, 27th August 2018, 24th September 2018, 22nd October 2018, 10th December 2018, 17th December 2018, 25th February 2019, 25th March 2019, 25th April 2019, 27th May 2019, 24th June 2019, 26th August 2019, 23rd September 2019, 21st October 2019 and 16th December 2019. From 2014 to 2017 a Steering Group, chaired by the Assistant Secretary, Acute Hospitals Division, reporting to the Secretary General, was in place to oversee, monitor and support the project. The NPHDB Chair and Project Director were members of that Group. That Group met 22 times.