National Maternity Hospital deal


Sir, – Prof Shane Higgins expresses frustration that the argument keeps changing regarding the proposed National Maternity Hospital (“Master warns about hospital ethos dispute”, News, June 2nd).

In fact, the argument is a simple and consistent one. A hospital funded by the State should be owned and managed by the State rather than by a private charity. The idea of healthcare as charity should be consigned to the past. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 1.

Sir, – The question of the National Maternity Hospital’s ethos rumbles on.

There may be a simple reason. I seem to remember that one out of every three of us voted, just two years ago, not to allow the Dáil to legislate for abortion. Can’t we assume that a similar proportion of those who step across the threshold of the new hospital, in whatever capacity, will feel likewise?

Will there be a place in the car park for us to park our “ethos” (whether Catholic or not) and walk in ethics-free – for what is an “ethos” but a summation of our ethics? And what would a hospital be without ethics? – Yours, etc,


Dún Laoghaire,

Co Dublin.

Sir, – Further to “National Maternity Hospital: Has threat of church influence been removed?” (Analysis, June 2nd), who is this unnamed canon lawyer Paul Cullen quotes?

Letter writers are required to put their names to their opinions but not this august personage?

This individual, a man I presume, should have the courage to reveal the name behind the advice.

Isn’t it ironic, though, that you consult an anonymous canon lawyer to assure us that all is well with a hugely expensive deal of vital importance to the State? – Yours, etc,


Dublin 8.