Fianna Fáil Health Spokesperson, Stephen Donnelly TD joined Dublin Central General Election Candidate, Mary Fitzpatrick last week to meet with the Master of the Rotunda Hospital, it’s Chief Operations Officer and the Chief of Midwifery and Nursing.

Commenting following the visit, Mary said, “The Rotunda on Parnell Square is not just one of Ireland’s leading providers of antenatal and perinatal care, it’s in fact the world’s longest operational maternity hospital.

“As was detailed in last week’s episode of The Rotunda broadcast on RTE Two, the hospital’s staff continue to provide exceptional care in difficult and challenging working conditions.

“Through the years the hospital’s midwives have delivered over one million Dubliners and just last year, 20,000 mothers and babies were cared for by staff in the Rotunda.

“The harsh reality is that there are parts of the hospitals building that are centuries old and is no longer fit for purpose. This is one of the foremost factors leading to an overcrowded Intensive Care Unit and wards.

“Despite being Europe’s busiest hospital for women to give birth, accounting for 25% of all neonatal births in the country, the Government has long fingering any development of the hospital.

“We must also be mindful that once legislation regarding the 8th Amendment is enacted it is likely that the Rotunda will also need to provide those relevant services to women. As Dublin’s population grows exponentially, the demand on maternity services naturally increases and that demand must be met with more appropriate levels of funding.

“The Government needs to better enable the hospital to develop a new five storey west wing building to provide facilities that meet modern up to date standards. This project has already received the support of Dublin City Council but requires funding.

“This development would provide essential support for women on the north side of Dublin including the inner city.”