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HSE (South) Fails To Deliver Midwives For “Five Star” Maternity Hospital In Cork. 05/02/2007


PRESS RELEASE, Monday, February 5th, 2007

Last Friday afternoon, INO midwife and nurse members informed local management of their unavailability for transfer to the new maternity services set to open on the grounds of Cork University Hospital in March 2007 until safe staffing levels are agreed.  This was in response to:

  • A breakdown in trust between INO and management of the HSE South.  
  • HSE South’s misrepresentation of the Bons Secours position on the number of midwives choosing to transfer to the new hospital.  
  • HSE’s permanent defence of unsafe midwifery staffing levels and their continued refusal to cross match their allocation of midwives with an independent midwife consultant as proposed by the INO.  
  • HSE’s attempt to replace trained midwives with pupil midwives and care assistants.

Speaking earlier this morning, INO Industrial Relations Officer, Patsy Doyle said:

“The HSE (South) have promised the Cork public ‘a new age in maternity care’ in time for the general election.  Our midwife and nurse members will not mislead the public in this way.  The Maternity Hospital is decorated beautifully.  However, the Unit will not be clinically viable until the HSE (South) have delivered on the number of midwives necessary to run a safe service to cater for the anticipated 8,000 deliveries and the special care and neo-natal babies from the greater Munster area. 

We are calling on the Minister for Health, Mary Harney to delay her visit to open the Unit until the INO and other unions have reached agreement with the HSE on delivery of an adequate number of midwives and other staff to preside over the most important journey a person ever makes.

The INO has sought the urgent intervention of the Labour Relations Commission and a return of the independent midwife expert on the dispute.”



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Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation (Cumann Altrai agus Ban Cabhrach na hEireann). The Whitworth Building, North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7. T:+353 1 664 0600 E:inmo@inmo.ie