The co-leader of the Social Democrats Róisín Shortall has slammed the Government's approach to resolving issues around the additional cost claims at the National Children's Hospital.
She said the project, at St James's Hospital in Dublin under construction by BAM, is more than nine-months delayed.
It is reported that the board overseeing the project has not yet received a 'valid work programme' from the builder.
The hospital was originally expected to open in 2023.
But Deputy Shortall told Pat Kenny she raised red flags when the National Paediatric Development Board (NPHDB) appeared before the Oireachtas Committee on Health last November.
"There's no doubt there is a very serious problem there at the moment - there's a stalemate - and the clock is ticking in relation to the cost, and also of course in relation to the timescale involved".
She said there needs to be some kind of breakthrough.
"When the development board were in with the Health Committee of the Dáil in November at that stage we were given this report, they were about nine months behind, there were ongoing disputes between the development board and BAM.
"They did consider cancelling the contract last year, and there's about 600 claims in from BAM.
"The estimated legal costs involved in that - not the claim costs, the legal costs - are now at about €15m.
"So it's an absolute quagmire", she said.
'A waste of time'
She said it is not clear who is taking the lead in resolving issues around the claims for extra costs.
"My concern is that it's not clear who actually is taking charge of this.
"Following the meeting in November, and serious concerns about it at that point, I raised questions with the Minister for Health.
"But the reply that you get is that it's the development board that has the statutory responsibility for this.
"But it seems that nobody in Government is taking a hold of this and ensuring that the thing is resolved.
"It's been dragging on now endlessly."
"And at the point when the development board were in at the committee, they weren't in a position to tell us what was the revised estimated completion date - they hadn't even got a working assumption - nor had they got an update in relation to the estimated revised cost of this".
She said they were still estimating the project costs at €1.4bn.
"As of now, they're still using the figure of €1.433bn - despite the fact that the project is more than nine months delayed, and despite the fact that there are now 600 claims against the development board.
"That meeting in November was really a waste of time, because it didn't take us forward at all".
She said the National Paediatric Development Board (NPHDB) was asked to come back in the New Year "when they have worked out those estimates".