Emotional Health Minister says Portlaoise concerns will be addressed

Minister for Health James Reilly has moved to assure expectant mothers about the standard of services at the Midland Regional Hospital in Portlaoise.

It comes as the chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan prepares a report into the deaths of four newborn infants over six years at the hospital.

Minister Reilly has suggested a full independent inquiry by HIQA will be ordered when the report from Dr Holohan is completed.

An emotional Minister said every step will be taken to stop more deaths and thanked the families for meeting with him over the weekend.

"If there was ever a case which demonstrates the need for a patient safety agency, this is it" he said.

"So to Roisin, Mark, Shauna and Joey and Natasha I want to say thank you to the time you gave me to tell your story and your concerns.

"They will be addressed, and they'll be addressed if full" he added, his voice breaking."

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