Tuesday, 10 February 2004

Ceisteanna (270, 271)

Dan Neville

Ceist:

346 Mr. Neville asked the Minister for Health and Children the expected date of completion of the Dunne inquiry into organ retention. [3690/04]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Arthur Morgan

Ceist:

369 Mr. Morgan asked the Minister for Health and Children the nature of relationship required to make representations to the Dunne inquiry in respect of organs of relatives retained without permission in this State; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3937/04]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for Health and Children)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 346 and 369 together.

The post-mortem inquiry is a non-statutory inquiry chaired by Ms Anne Dunne SC. Since the beginning of 2003, the inquiry has been concentrating on the investigation of the post-mortem policy, practice and procedure of the three main paediatric hospitals, the National Children's Hospital, Tallaght, the Children's University Hospital, Temple Street, and Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children, Crumlin. By mid-October, the inquiry had heard 56 hospital and non-hospital witnesses at oral hearings and had accumulated almost 3,500 pages of transcripts of oral evidence. The chairman has informed me that the inquiry has received considerable co-operation from each of the hospitals with which it is presently dealing. I am further informed that the inquiry's non-statutory nature has not thus far significantly hampered its substantive work. The chairman is mindful of the need to have her report completed as soon as is reasonably practicable following the completion of the oral evidence. Any member of the public can make a submission to the Dunne inquiry in respect of matters relevant to its terms of reference.