Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South West Seán Crowe has said that the current attempts to downgrade Tallaght Children’s Hospital and leave it as little more than a bruises and bandages centre is shortsighted and neglects the very real impact that Tallaght could have in tackling children’s waiting lists for procedures.

Teachta Crowe said:

“The HSE has always planned to convert Tallaght Children’s Hospital into an Urgent Care Centre upon completion of the National Children’s Hospital. Their reasoning is that the resources from Tallaght will be required at St James’s.

“However, even with the National Children’s Hospital way behind schedule, the HSE seem intent on pushing ahead with their original timetable for downgrading Tallaght. It is impossible to get a straight answer as to when the National Children’s Hospital will be completed, but it won’t be anytime soon.

“During the pandemic, waiting lists across the health service have grown even longer. There are almost 700 children waiting on Ear, Nose, and Throat procedures that could be dealt with in Tallaght if they had the support of the HSE to provide the resources and staff necessary.

“This would in turn free up space for Crumlin and Temple St to deal with the over 1,600 orthopaedic cases on their waiting lists that children desperately need in order to have the best possible quality of life.

“The HSE is once again displaying their complete lack of joined up thinking by downgrading Tallaght in favour of a National Children’s Hospital that is still little more than a hole in the ground.”