Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin has said it categorically supports the planned home of the new national children’s hospital after one of its senior doctors spoke out against it.
The management of the Dublin hospital said it wanted to reiterate its backing for the site chosen at St James’s in the capital despite the debate being reignited, this time from paediatric cardiologist Dr Orla Franklin.
The consultant spoke out as a new cardiac ward for sick babies was opened yesterday in Crumlin after parents raised €4.5m to pay for it.
Dr Franklin said sick babies and their mothers should be cared for as a package and the new national children’s hospital should be next to a maternity hospital and not in the grounds of St James’s.
Management at the Crumlin hospital issued a statement insisting that it was overwhelmingly in favour of the south inner city site.
“In April last year, the chairman of the board informed the Government that the board of Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital unanimously supported the location of the new children’s hospital on the St James’s campus and this position remains unchanged,” the hospital said.
“We look forward to working with the Children’s Hospital Group Board and the National Paediatric Hospital Development Board in developing this very important project on the St James’s campus.”
Dr Franklin said she returned from England five years ago expecting to work at the new national children’s hospital.
“I’m not working in the new hospital, there isn’t a plan for the new hospital, there isn’t a site for the new hospital,” she said.
“We know it’s going to be down in James’s, but no one can point to the area in James’s where it’s going to be.”
The proposed 6.3 hectare development in the south city was agreed by Government one year ago tomorrow as an alternative for the rejected Mater hospital location in the north of the capital.
Construction had been expected to be completed by the end of 2017 or into the early part of 2018.