Oireachtas Health Committee should listen to C4KH

Connolly for Kids Hospital(C4KH) sent the following to the Joint Oireachtas Health committee in Sept 2016 – but were ignored .  It was the C4KH who requested and gained the meeting of Oct 27th.  Billy Kelleher and his colleagues on the Health committee should have believed C4KH, not the  biased NPHBD/CHGB at that meeting.

Excerpt from C4KH Submission,to Heath Committee

“Value for money

Both the NPH Independent Review’s Financial Analysis(2011)[1] and the Dolphin Report (2012)[2] state that a greenfield site would be 25% cheaper to build on than an inner city site. The further demolition and rebuild of the adult St. James’s to facilitate an on-site Maternity hospital suggests a profligate attitude towards resource allocation. Any future expansion on this tight urban space would also generate extra construction cost. Building the NPH at Connolly Hospital would not only recoup the sunk costs of the Mater and James’s sites but money saved could be put towards the co-build of the new Rotunda Maternity Hospital, corridor-linked to the ICU of the NPH. This would be putting children first.

Faster, more cost-effective at Connolly

Departments currently at St. James’s requiring demolition / relocation to accommodate a relocatedMaternity Hospital .If the Maternity Hospital is added to the site, 1.26 hectares will be made available, requiring demolition/relocation of:

  • Adult Outpatients Department
  • Current ICU Department
  • Adult A/E Department.

(Note that the existing Coombe site stands on 3 Hectares)


ESTIMATE OF COST (2016) of the NPH if built at Connolly

Construction cost = €400M

Hospital 118,000 metres square @ €3000 per metre = €354M

Family accommodation 4,000 metres square @ €2,000 per metre = €8M

Research Department 3,000 metres @ €2,500 per metre= €7.5M

Two satellite units – 10,000 square metres @ €3,000 per metre = €30M

ADD Vat, Fees, fit-out and equipment @ app. 50% of construction Cost = €200M

TOTAL  =  €600 M

(Information Technology costs alone are estimated at app. €70M. Thus this figure is very conservative)


Estimate of Extra Cost if NPH is built at St. James’s in Dublin City Centre

  • Decanting and replacement of 21 departments, approx .=€100M
  • Sewer Diversion = €18M
  • Premium for Inner city construction 10% of construction cost =€40M
  • Underground car parking. Three levels .= €30M
  • Roof helipad fire proofing €2M
  • Dust protection, inflation, interest, contingency etc.?? Cost


Thus total projected cost (€600m+ €190M) for St. James’s site at current prices (2016) =  €790M



NPH at Connolly Hospital

  • Redesign

Utilising the work already achieved with departmental

proximities, areas required etc. a further period of 6 months is required.

  • Planning application to ABP

Three months if unopposed. Six months assuming objections.

  • Construction

Fast track Programme – 24 months

  • Commissioning

One month

Total Time from the “Proceed” date to Opening = 3 years[4].

[1]DoHNational Paediatric Hospital Independent Review’s Financial Analysis available at http://health.gov.ie/blog/publications/national-paediatric-hospital-independent-review/

[2]Appendix 4  “  Greenfield and urban sites: background note on the cost issues” available at http://health.gov.ie/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Dolphin_Full-Appendices-1-5.pdf

[3]Data received from Mr James Sheehan, Member of Connolly for Kids Hospital

Group, Founder, Blackrock Clinic, Hermitage and Galway Clinics. For further details see http://connollyforkidshospital.com/why-connolly/cheaper-faster/”




C4KH advertisement Sunday Independent, 8th January, 2017

NCHA readers will be interested in this advertisement by the umbrella group Connolly for Kids Hospital (C4KH) in today’s Sunday Independent. NCHA is a founding, and active, member of   C4KH .

LET’S BYPASS THE GATEKEEPERS -the NATIONAL PAEDIATRIC HOSPITAL DEVELOPMENT BOARD and the CHILDREN’SHOSPITAL GROUP BOARD and get to the DECISION-MAKERS -THE TAOISEACH AND THE MINISTER FOR HEALTH They it is who are to be held responsible for the choice of location of the Children’s hospital.

To see the advertisement-click here SunIndoAd


The Government must change the site

We  repeat -NCHA noted the decision of An Bord Pleanála on 28th April 2016 to grant planning permission for the development of the NPH at the site at St. James’s hospital in Dublin’s city centre.

We repeat – choosing between sites is not the function of ABP. We believe the government was wrong to have presented the St. James’s site for consideration by ABP.  The Cabinet made the wrong decision in November 2012  and that it is the responsibility of the current government to the children of Ireland of this and future generations to change the site.

We repeat ‘Flip the sites’. Put the satellite at St James and the main hospital at Connolly.

Quicker, Cheaper, Safer at CONNOLLY.

The row at cabinet, 6th November 2012

Billy Kelleher, T.D.,Fianna Fáil , at the Dáil “debate” on the NPH, 8th November 2012, referring to the Cabinet decision of two days earlier, 6th Nov 2012 to place the NPH on the St. James’s site in inner Dublin, said

“…. The Cabinet made a decision, yet within minutes we were informed by the media that there had been a massive row at Cabinet. We were told that two Ministers, Deputy Leo Varadkar and Deputy Joan Burton, were adamant that the Blanchardstown Connolly Hospital site should have been the location.”

Co-located Maternity -A “Red Line” for Critical Care Consultants

Below is  the Submission to An Bord Pleanála from the Department of Paediatric Intensive Care, September 2015  , signed by fifteen medical consultants.

Re: Co-location of a maternity hospital with the new children’s hospital  [PA0043]

To the Secretary,

We, whose daily practice involves caring for critically ill neonates, unreservedly support the need for a single, national children’s hospital, and are willing to compromise on many fronts to achieve this goal, acknowledging that no site is ideal.

Co-location with a physically linked maternity hospital is, in our expert opinion, non-negotiable. We are unwilling to endorse a national children’s hospital on a site that cannot accommodate this truly critical adjacency. To do so would be to fail those infants whom we are entrusted to protect. To proceed with such a project will result in the avoidable death or disability of many new-born babies for years to come.

It is our earnest wish that the proposal for the St. James’s site can deliver such a co-location. If, however, this is not the case, we urge the Board to have the courage and integrity to act accordingly.

Yours sincerely,

The Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin –Prof Mark Redmond, Mr Lars Nolke , Mr Jonathon McGuinness

Department of Cardiology, Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin–Dr Colin McMahon,  Dr Orla Franklin,  Dr Paul Oslizlok, Dr Kevin Walsh, Dr Damien Kenny, Dr Terry Prendiville

,The Joint Department of Paediatric Intensive Care Medicine, Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin and The Children’s University Hospital, Temple Street–Dr Martina Healy,   Dr Kevin Carson,   Dr Cathy McMahon,   Dr Dermot Doherty, Dr Suzanne Crowe,  Dr Cormac Breatnach

“The Right Site”and “essential criteria”

Excerpt from the Dolphin Report, 2012  –

“While any avoidable delay should be minimised, it is more important to choose the right site which meets essential criteria over the long-term (say 50-100 years) than one which is merely the fastest in the short-term. This approach has been endorsed by patients, parents, and health professionals who met us”.

Excerpt from The National Paediatric Hospital  Independent Review, 2011-

“All groups presenting to the Review Team spoke of the imperative of .. co-location .. with a tertiary maternity and neonatal service.”[our emphasis].

NCHA comment : A Maternity on the James’s site ? When? An Imperative?

Ultimately” says Minister Reilly (2012).

In time ” says Minister Harris (2016)


Petition letter from 60,000 citizens to the Taoiseach,22 June 2016

Readers might wish to read this  letter

Dated 22 June 2016, The Connolly for Kids Hospital

60,000   say-Better, faster, cheaper at Connolly

Dear Taoiseach,

OVER  SIXTY THOUSAND  people from every county in Ireland, North and South, have signed our petition since its launch in February 2016.


 Connolly for Kids Hospital is asking Enda Kenny to build the new Children’s Hospital at Connolly Hospital beside the M50 instead of at St. James’s Hospital in Dublin City Centre.

 Advantages of Connolly are: 145 acres-Expansion space, Easier Access for all Ireland, Extensive Parking, Co-location with Adult Hospital and the new Rotunda Maternity Hospital leading to Better Clinical Outcomes for children AND – it will be Cheaper and Faster to build.”

This is not just a lobby group speaking, this is the people of Ireland speaking. Democracy requires to be heard and acted on.

We refer to our nearest neighbour- the parliament of the United Kingdom,“Petitions which reach 100,000 signatures are almost always debated [population of UK is 64 million]. ..MPs might consider your petition for a debate before it reaches 100,000 signatures.We may contact you about the issue covered by your petition. For example, we sometimes invite people who create petitions to take part in a discussion with MPs or government ministers, or to give evidence to a select committee.”

In Switzerland a motion with 100,000  signatures automatically triggers a Referendum in a country with a population of eight million.

In Ireland we now have over 60,000 signatories in a population of 4.5 million (one 16th of the UK population)calling on you as Taoiseach of our country to change the site to Connolly.  Surely that entitles the families of Ireland to at least a Public Hearing at the Oireachtas Committee on Health?

What the people are saying is that the government presented the wrong hospital to an Bord Pleanála. Too much has happened behind closed doors .

We are requesting that you as Taoiseach pause the National Paediatric Hospital project at St. James’s and initiate its urgent review by Government.

Let the “New Politics”begin

Yours sincerely,

The Connolly for Kids Hospital Group