Dáil Éireann - Volume 482 - 18 November, 1997
Written Answers. - Drug Addicted Babies.
Mr. Shatter Mr. Shatter
174. Mr. Shatter asked the Minister for Health and Children the number of drug addicted babies cared for in each of the maternity hospitals in the State for each of the past five years. [19672/97]
Minister for Health and Children (Mr. Cowen) Brian Cowen
Minister for Health and Children (Mr. Cowen): The incidence of babies born with drug addiction symptoms is mainly confined to the Dublin area. It should be pointed out that not all babies born to drug addicted mothers require special care in a neo-natal intensive care unit. Babies requiring such special care remain in the unit until the effect of the drugs has gone, which is usually six to eight weeks.
The information requested by the Deputy for the three main maternity hospitals in Dublin is as follows:
 The Rotunda has indicated that, while exact statistics for 1997 have not yet been collated, indications are that the figure will be similar to the 1996 figure of 43 such babies. Statistics for each of the previous three years indicate that between ten and 14 drug addicted babies required special care treatment.
The National Maternity Hospital in Holles Street has indicated that the number of babies born with drug addiction symptoms in 1996 was approximately ten. The hospital has also indicated that it treats approximately ten such babies every year.
Dáil Éireann 482 Written Answers. Drug Addicted Babies.