The annual conference 2012 of the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) gets underway in Co. Kerry later.

Doctors will debate more than 80 motions over 3 days.

These will include several relating to the Irish problem of obesity.

One calls on the Education Minister to consider introducing Leaving Cert points for students who take part in P.E. and sport in school.

Meanwhile another motion calls on the government to ensure all drivers are tested for alcohol following a crash in which someone is been hurt even if they are unconscious.

The Minister for Health, Dr James Reilly, will address delegates at the Gala Banquet on Saturday evening. 

Dr Ronan Boland will give his outgoing Presidential address on the first afternoon of the AGM, Thursday 12th April at 2.30pm, before the chain of office will be handed over to incoming President and Public Health doctor Paul McKeown. 

On Friday afternoon, Chief Executive of the IMO, Mr George McNeice will address the conference. He will consider the developments of 2011, and look to the upcoming work and landscape of things to come for the IMO and its membership in 2012-2013.

On the evening of Saturday 14th April at 7.30pm, the incoming presidential address of Dr Paul McKeown will take place prior to the conference Gala Banquet. Paul McKeown is the incoming IMO President. 

Doctors also want to know how yet more reforms promised in HSE administrative structures will deliver better, faster patient care given that new figures show that 170,000 people are waiting since January last year for an out-patient consultation.

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Update on the National Children’s Hospital 

 A 50-acre site in Swords in Co Dublin has been proposed as the location for the new National Children’s Hospital. 

The Broadmeadow Healthcare Group claims it can complete the development by 2016 at a lower cost than the €650m already earmarked for the project.

The group proposes building the hospital alongside a maternity hospital and an adult teaching facility on a greenfield site at Lissenhall.

The original plan at the Mater Site was rejected in February by An Bord Pleanála as the proposed 16 floor building was deemed to be too high with a negative impact on the Dublin skyline.

Last week the Sisters of Mercy order agreed to offer the old Mater adult hospital site for inclusion in new plans which could create a tri-located hospital with adult, maternity and paediatric services on one site.