There has been some public commentary in recent days about the Department of Health’s position regarding a public inquiry on Muckamore Abbey Hospital.
The Department would like to reiterate that it has not ruled out an inquiry.
It remains its position that establishing an inquiry is a decision for a Minister to take.
Furthermore, any public inquiry at this stage would have to defer to the ongoing PSNI investigation into Muckamore.
This position was explained by the Department’s Permanent Secretary Richard Pengelly in his evidence to the House of Commons NI Affairs Committee in January.
Mr Pengelly stated: “A public inquiry would not be able to move at this stage. This is the point I made to the families: I am not saying there should not be a public inquiry. I am saying the time to answer that question will be when the police investigation has concluded. Hopefully there will be a Minister in place to do that.”
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