Cabinet approves planned move of National Maternity Hospital to St Vincent's site
The topic has been much discussed in recent weeks.
Cabinet has approved the relocation of the National Maternity Hospital in Dublin from Holles Street to St Vincent’s, it has been reported.
As part of the much-discussed plan, the Government would lease the land from St Vincent's for 299 years at €10 a year.
Earlier this year, the Religious Sisters of Charity's shareholding in St Vincent’s Healthcare Group was transferred to another entity named St Vincent’s Holdings which will lease the land.
However, there have been concerns that a potential remaining religious influence could interfere with decisions made at the hospital.
As such, there have been calls on Government to delay signing off on the plan in order to examine it at greater length.
However, according to multiple outlets, the proposal was agreed by Cabinet at a meeting on Tuesday.
Speaking on his way into the meeting, Health Minister Stephen Donnelly said the plan was a "crucial investment in healthcare" and "the biggest investment in women's healthcare in the history of the State".
"We've listened very carefully over the last two weeks," he stated.
"People have had very understandable concerns and what we've been able to clarify is it is a public hospital. It's a voluntary public hospital.
"It will be a fully secular public hospital.
"There are layers of guarantees in place in terms of no religious influence now or into the future.
"Not only can all services be provided but in this new hospital, all services must be provided."
Main image via Sam Boal / RollingNews.ie