HC Deb 03 March 1905 vol 142 cc320-1

To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether there have been any exceptional circumstances, to justify the granting of an inquiry into the necessity for an official maternity nurse in Ballyhaunis dispensary district; whether he will state on what portion of the evidence Sir Acheson M'Cullagh based his recommendation to have a sealed Order issued in connection with the matter; and whether he will order that a copy of the evidence given at the inquiry be sent to Mr. Michael Delaney, the senior guardian for the district.

(Answered by Mr. Atkinson.) Representations were made to the Local Government Board by ratepayers urging the necessity for the appointment of a midwife in this district. The guardians failed to take any action in the matter, and the Board thereupon directed a local inquiry to be held in order to ascertain the facts. The Board's decision was based not upon the inspector's report, but upon the sworn evidence adduced at the inquiry. A copy of the evidence has already been supplied to the board of guardians.


To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that the bulk of the evidence given at the recent inquiry in the Claremorris union regarding the necessity for appointing a maternity nurse for the Ballyhaunis dispensary district was against such an appointment being made, and that Ballyhaunis district has residing within it two medical doctors and two maternity nurses; and if so, whether, in view of the fact that the appointment of such a nurse is in opposition to the public opinion of the district, he will have the necessary instructions given to have the sealed Order immediately withdrawn.

(Answered by Mr. Atkinson.) The evidence of individual guardians was opposed to the appointment; but it is to be borne in mind that as a body they had persistently declined to make such an appointment. On the other hand, the expert testimony of the medical officer of the district was strongly in favour of the employment of a trained midwife. There is but one medical officer resident in the district whose duty it is to attend on medical relief tickets, and but one midwife, whose services are not, however, available for the sick poor free of charge. My right hon. friend stated on February 23rd† that it is not proposed to withdraw the sealed Order.