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Minister for Health Simon Harris launches new National Standards for Safer Better Maternity Services

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, launched the new National Standards for Safer Better Maternity Services at Dublin Castle this morning. The new Standards have been developed by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) in association with an Advisory Group drawn from a wide range of stakeholders.

Speaking at the launch, the Minister said “I have described 2016 as a landmark year for maternity services and this event closes a year which began with this country’s first ever National Maternity Strategy and which, just last month, saw agreement on the redevelopment of the new National Maternity Hospital.

"The standards we are launching today go hand-in-hand with the Maternity Strategy, which envisages an Ireland: where women and babies have access to safe, high-quality care in a setting that is most appropriate to their needs; where women and families are placed at the centre of all services, and are treated with dignity, respect and compassion; and where parents are supported before, during and after pregnancy to allow them to give their child the best possible start in life.

The Minister noted that the Standards, coupled with the new National Maternity Strategy, published by the Department of Health in January 2016, pave the way for a new, better maternity service.

The Minister concluded “These Standards along with the range of patient safety initiatives taking place in my Department will support better, safer clinical decision-making and a more connected health service, delivering better outcomes for patients.”