The story of an unnamed terminally ill young girl who can't return home has been heard in the Dáil.
The 11-year-old girl is unable to return to her home in Co. Tipperary due to a lack of paediatric palliative care in south Tipp and the wider South East region.
Independent TD Michael Lowry, who raised the issue in the Dáil, said the girl's mother is "distraught at the prospect of not having her daughter at home for her final hours in the company of her family and friends."
Mr Lowry continued: "families have no alternative other than to broadcast their heartache in order to get the support they need. Families should not have to resort to politicians or the media at such a painful and difficult time."
Responding to the Tipp TD's story, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar agreed that it was wrong that the family had to go public in order to raise awareness of their difficult situation, promising that the issue would be resolved for this family and others who find themselves in a similar situation.
“Certainly the political will is there to fix it", Varadkar said. "I’m going to... convene a meeting of the Department of the Taoiseach involving the Minister for Health and the HSE just to get a proper overview of Paediatric Palliative Care services, find out what the problem is and then we’re going to fix it.”
The tragic story closely follows that of a terminally ill Waterford child, 7-year-old Danny Norris from Ballymacarbry, who was initially unable to leave Crumlin Children's Hospital and return home due to the lack of paediatric palliative care. Danny passed away in December 2022.
Danny had returned to his home earlier that month after his family had won a case against the HSE to secure palliative care in his own home.