Dáil Éireann - Volume 597 - 10 February, 2005

Written Answers - Organ Retention.

  77. Mr. Quinn asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Health and Children the progress made to date by the Dunne inquiry into the retention of organs of deceased children; the date on which the report will be published; the steps being taken to address the concerns of the families affected; if it is intended to introduce legislation to regulate organ retention and transplants; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4231/05]

  124. Mr. Kenny asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Health and Children when the Dunne inquiry report on paediatric hospitals will be published; the reason for the delay in the publication of this report; the communications she has had with the Parents for Justice group; when she plans to meet with the group; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4363/05]

  Ms Harney: I propose to take Questions Nos. 77 and 124 together.

On 1 September 2004, the Government decided that the post mortem inquiry should furnish its final report not later than 31 March 2005 and that the inquiry would then cease to exist. The chairman of the inquiry has been so advised and I expect her final report on or before that date. The chairman had indicated to me that she would provide her report on paediatric hospitals in December 2004 but this did not happen. I am in communication with Parents for Justice and will arrange to meet them in the near future.

The European Commission is currently considering the question of a directive in respect of organ transplantation, including the issue of consent, and proposes to conduct a thorough scientific evaluation of the situation. It will present a report on its analysis to the Council of the European Union as soon as possible. It is hoped that this will provide the framework for the development of legislation in this area.

In the meantime, it is intended to review organ donation, procurement and utilisation policy in Ireland. This work will inform Ireland’s contribution to the discussions about the proposed directive on organs.

Question No. 78 answered with Question No. 43.