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New group to identify coroner recommendations with ‘national implications’

By David Lynch - 23rd Jun 2024

coroner recommendations

The HSE is working on raising the profile of a new group tasked with identifying coroner recommendations that have “national implications”, the Medical Independent (MI) has been told.

The issue was discussed at a meeting in February of the HSE quality and safety committee. According to minutes, committee members were told that a HSE coroners recommendations core governance group (CGG) had recently been established.

A spokesperson from the HSE confirmed to MI that the CGG is now operational. It will serve as the central point of contact within the HSE for disseminating coronial recommendations pertinent to HSE and HSE-funded services.

“This will be in addition to the coronial recommendation(s) being sent to individual services/organisations following an inquest.”

This “newly formed multi-disciplinary” group includes a coroner representative, patient partner, and HSE staff.

The role of the CGG is to identify recommendations that have “national implications for patient safety and learning”, the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson also noted that the group will link with the relevant operational services to “monitor and track the status of the implementation” of the coronal recommendations received.

The CGG will also inform and advise the HSE Chief Clinical Officer of any risks and challenges encountered in implementing recommendations by HSE and HSE-funded services.

The spokesperson added that the CGG “is developing its profile and encouraging all coroners to collaborate with the group to establish a reliable and standardised process for managing coronial recommendations”. The group’s effectiveness relies on receiving these recommendations from coroners nationwide, they pointed out.

However, the spokesperson noted that only a “few” recommendations have been sent to the group to date.

Members of the HSE’s national quality and patient safety team have attended recent coroners’ training events to help “raise” the new group’s profile.

In November 2023, the joint committee on justice made a series of recommendations in its Report on an Examination of the Operation of the Coroner’s Services.

Among the report’s recommendations was the need for collaboration with the HSE on the improvement of mortuary facilities.

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