A HOMELESS man lay dead in a section of a major hospital for around a week before being discovered.
A member of staff found the body of the man, who was in his 30s, lying in a closed section of the Mater Hospital complex on Dublin's northside.
Gardai were called after the decomposing remains were discovered on the morning of April 9 in a section of the hospital that was not in use following the opening of the Whitty Building in February.
It was found that the man had died around April 2 – seven days before his discovery.
The Health Service Executive was notified of the incident but decided not to launch an investigation and confirmed the matter was dealt with by the hospital.
An internal investigation at the hospital has been completed.
It is understood the man was homeless, and was not a patient at the hospital, but was known to some of the staff as a “character” from around the area.
The man had managed to gain entry to a part of the Mater Hospital complex which was not in use.
“The staff were sent an email about the body. Everybody was shocked and wondering how he could have been there so long.
“There was a dead body in a hospital and no one knew about it,” a source said.
A spokesperson for the hospital confirmed the incident, but both the hospital and the gardai have refused to comment on the cause of the man’s death.
“The Mater Hospital can confirm that a body of a man, who was not a patient of the hospital, was discovered within the hospital on the morning of Wednesday, April 9, 2014, in an area no longer in use.
“An Garda Siochana were informed and were in attendance at the scene.
“The body was transferred to the Dublin City Morgue on Wednesday afternoon,” a statement said.
“The HSE were informed of the incident and the Mater Hospital has carried out its own internal investigation into the incident. No further comment will be made,” it added.
A garda spokesman said the incident was investigated as a sudden death, but was not being treated as suspicious by officers from nearby Mountjoy garda station.
The new building at the hospital opened earlier this year following a €284m redevelopment.
The project involved the construction of a 55,000 square metre space, with services including a new emergency department, outpatients department and 12 new operating theatres.