Belfast Telegraph

Inquiry will be 'thorough and fair'

Health chiefs have said the investigation into Savita Halappanavar's death will be thorough, methodical and fair.

Announcing its terms of reference, the Health Service Executive (HSE) said a report, with names censored, will be given to the family detailing the chronology, findings and recommendations.

It said the inquiry will seek to establish the facts and identify any causal or contributory factors that may have influenced her death.

"The HSE is keen that Mr Halappanavar will now engage with the investigation team in order to complete this investigation as expeditiously as possible. The chairman remains open to meeting with Mr Halappanavar," it said.

The inquiry will look at Mrs Halappanavar's treatment from October 21-28. The HSE said its aim is to establish the factual circumstances leading up her death and recommend actions that will address the factors that led to her death to eliminate or reduce the risk of a repeat. It said that if any safety concerns are uncovered during the inquiry HSE bosses will be notified immediately.

The chairman, Professor Sir Sabaratnam Arulkumaran, and his team will have access to all relevant staff and personnel, files and records. But the HSE warned that access to medical information is subject to consent and data protection requirements including court applications, where necessary.

The HSE said the investigation will be cognisant of the rights of all involved to privacy and confidentiality; dignity and respect; due process; and natural and constitutional justice.

Anyone who took part in the investigation will have an opportunity to give input to the extracts from the report relevant to them to ensure that they are factually accurate and fair from their perspective.

The anonymised report may be published and may be subject to a Freedom of Information request, the HSE said.

A family liaison officer is also to be appointed to keep the Halappanavars up to date.


From Belfast Telegraph