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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 453-476
 Header Item Hospital Appointments Status
 Header Item Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services Staff
 Header Item General Medical Services Scheme
 Header Item Hospital Appointments Status
 Header Item Hospital Staff
 Header Item Medicinal Products Reimbursement
 Header Item Ministerial Meetings
 Header Item Legislative Measures
 Header Item Maternity Services
 Header Item Midwifery Services
 Header Item Medical Aids and Appliances Provision
 Header Item Disabilities Data
 Header Item Drug and Alcohol Task Forces
 Header Item Services for People with Disabilities
 Header Item Disability Services Data
 Header Item Respite Care Services Data
 Header Item Respite Care Services Data
 Header Item Mental Health Services Data
 Header Item Disabilities Assessments

Tuesday, 2 July 2019

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 984 No. 5

First Page Previous Page Page of 86 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 453-476

Hospital Appointments Status

 453. Deputy Mary Butler Information on Mary Butler Zoom on Mary Butler asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when a person (details supplied) will receive an appointment with a respiratory consultant at University Hospital Waterford; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27998/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.

The National Waiting List Management Policy, a standardised approach to managing scheduled care treatment for in-patient, day case and planned procedures, since January 2014, has been developed to ensure that all administrative, managerial and clinical staff follow an agreed national minimum standard for the management and administration of waiting lists for scheduled care. This policy, which has been adopted by the HSE, sets out the processes that hospitals are to implement to manage waiting lists.

In relation to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Question No. 454 answered with Question No. 408.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services Staff

 455. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin Information on Fiona O'Loughlin Zoom on Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris his plans to increase CAMHS staffing in CHO 7, which is less than half the personnel numbers recommended under A Vision For Change; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [27774/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Jim Daly): Information on Jim Daly Zoom on Jim Daly As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

General Medical Services Scheme

 456. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the reason the HSE is no longer fully funding the cost of prescription contact lenses (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28028/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As this is a service matter it has been referred to the HSE for attention and direct reply to the Deputy.

Hospital Appointments Status

 457. Deputy Mary Butler Information on Mary Butler Zoom on Mary Butler asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when a person (details supplied) will be called for an initial appointment for assessment at University Hospital Waterford; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28029/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.

The National Waiting List Management Policy, a standardised approach to managing scheduled care treatment for in-patient, day case and planned procedures, since January 2014, has been developed to ensure that all administrative, managerial and clinical staff follow an agreed national minimum standard for the management and administration of waiting lists for scheduled care. This policy, which has been adopted by the HSE, sets out the processes that hospitals are to implement to manage waiting lists.

In relation to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Hospital Staff

 458. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if a full staffing complement will be in place when the new radiation oncology unit at Cork University Hospital opens in October 2019. [28036/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond to you directly as soon as possible.

Medicinal Products Reimbursement

 459. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the status of the provision of respreeza for patients with alpha-1. [28037/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The HSE has statutory responsibility for decisions on the pricing and reimbursement of medicines under the Health (Pricing and Supply of Medical Goods) Act 2013.

The HSE carefully considered the pricing and reimbursement of human alpha1-proteinase inhibitor (Respreeza). The manufacturer was notified in August 2017 that the HSE was unable to recommend reimbursement. The HSE concluded that there was not enough evidence to suggest that patients would derive a clinically meaningful benefit from this treatment and that the current price was not a cost effective use of resources.

I understand that the HSE and the applicant have since signed a ring-fenced agreement for the continued supply of this medicine to the patients involved in the original patient access programme, which starts from the commencement of the next Respreeza clinical trial. This is expected to commence this year.

Ministerial Meetings

 460. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if he will meet the families that have been impacted by the misreading of scans at University Hospital Kerry further to his commitment at the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Health on 22 May 2019; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28038/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris My Department and I have sought to be kept regularly informed regarding the Radiological Lookback Review which took place at University Hospital Kerry in 2017/2018. The report of this review was completed and published in December 2018.

My officials last met with the South/South West Hospital Group on 08 May 2019 to discuss the look-back review, the status of implementation of the recommendations made in the report of the review and ongoing communications with the families. I was subsequently briefed on this on 14 May. 

My Department has been assured by the HSE and the South/South West Hospital Group that implementation of the report's recommendations are underway and are receiving the priority they require.

I wish to once again express heartfelt sympathies to the patients and their families. My absolute priority remains ensuring their confidentiality is respected. On an ongoing basis, my officials have been assured by the South/South West Hospital Group that all affected patients have received or are receiving the care they need.  I accept that this has been distressing time for those involved.

I have made commitments to travel to visit health services in the Kerry area and plan to do so in the coming weeks. Planning for my visit is underway. 

Legislative Measures

 461. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when the human tissue (transplantation, post-mortem, anatomical examination and public display) Bill will be published. [28039/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The Government approved the publication of the General Scheme of a Human Tissue (Transplantation, Post-Mortem, Anatomical Examination and Public Display) Bill on the 01 May 2019. The General Scheme is now available on the Department of Health website (https://health.gov.ie/blog/publications/general-scheme-of-a-human-tissue-transplantation-post-mortem-anatomical-examination-and-public-display-bill/).

  The General Scheme, which is wide-ranging, includes provisions on:

  - organ donation and transplantation;

  - hospital post-mortems;

  - anatomical examination (including medical education and training); and

  - the public display of bodies after death.

  The General Scheme will:

  - regulate the removal, retention, storage, use and disposal of human tissue from deceased persons;

  - provide general conditions for the removal, donation and use of organs and tissues from deceased and living persons for the purposes of transplantation; and

  - provide for an opt-out system of consent for organ donation and for an associated register.

  My Department is working with the Office of Parliamentary Counsel on the drafting of the Bill. The General Scheme has been referred to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health for pre-legislative scrutiny. It is anticipated that this process will commence in September.

  Question No. 462 answered with Question No. 87.

Maternity Services

 463. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if his attention has been drawn to the fact that treatment of therapeutic hypothermia which is used to treat newborn babies with moderate to severe hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy is not available in 15 of the 19 maternity hospitals here; and if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that the treatment is time crucial and must commence within six hours of birth. [28041/19]

 464. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if his attention has been drawn to the fact that over the period 2016 to 2017, 140 babies underwent therapeutic hypothermia treatment and 40% of these babies were transferred from regional hospitals. [28042/19]

 465. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if his attention has been drawn to a matter in relation to newborn babies (details supplied); and his views on whether the treatment is time crucial. [28043/19]

 466. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris his plans to extend therapeutic hypothermia treatment on site to each maternity hospital; if so, the timeline in place for the allocation of funds and the implementation of the service in maternity hospitals; if plans exist, the nature of the plans; and if not, the reason therefor. [28044/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris I propose to take Questions Nos. 463 to 466, inclusive, together.

  The National Women & Infants Health Programme was established in the HSE to lead the management, organisation and delivery of maternity, gynaecology and neonatal services across primary, community and acute care.

  As the queries raised by the Deputy relate to operational matters, I have asked the HSE to reply to you directly.

Midwifery Services

 467. Deputy Louise O'Reilly Information on Louise O'Reilly Zoom on Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris further to Parliamentary Question No. 401 of 21 May 2019, the way in which the number of student midwifery nurses rose from 533 in December 2018 to 933 in April 2019; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28045/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

 468. Deputy Seán Haughey Information on Seán Haughey Zoom on Seán Haughey asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if the FreeStyle Libre device will be made available to all persons with type 1 diabetes; if the HSE review on the matter has been completed; if he will consider a report recently submitted on the issue by an organisation (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28049/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris Under the Health (Pricing and Supply of Medical Goods) Act 2013, the HSE has statutory responsibility for the administration of the community drug schemes; therefore, the matter has been referred to the HSE for attention and direct reply to the Deputy.

Disabilities Data

 469. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of adults with an intellectual disability in residential care; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28051/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

Drug and Alcohol Task Forces

 470. Deputy Tony McLoughlin Information on Tony McLoughlin Zoom on Tony McLoughlin asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris his plans to roll out new localised pilot schemes aimed at tackling and preventing drug and alcohol addiction in local communities which can and will operate and develop outside the governance of the local or regional drug and alcohol taskforces; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28068/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Catherine Byrne): Information on Catherine Byrne Zoom on Catherine Byrne Drug and Alcohol Task Forces play a key role in assessing the extent and nature of the drug problem in local communities and in ensuring that a coordinated approach is taken across all sectors to address substance misuse.

  The Department of Health provides in the region of €28 million to task forces annually through various channels of funding, including the HSE.

  Task forces are responsible for allocating money to suitable projects based on locally identified needs and priorities. Applications for funding of prevention initiatives should be made to the relevant task force, in the first instance, for consideration.

I announced on 6th March 2019, of one million euro for the implementation of the National Drugs Strategy; Reducing Harm, Supporting Recovery  . This funding, which will be provided on a recurring, multi-annual basis, will address the priorities set down in the strategy including early harm reduction responses to emerging trends in substance misuse, and improving access to services for people with complex needs.

  Following consideration of the outcome of a consultation process with task forces and community healthcare organisations, I approved a three-strand funding model for this additional funding. Task Forces were notified of this funding model on 17 May. A series of regional workshops took place in June outlining the details of scheme and the application process for this funding. The deadline for the receipt of applications for this funding is 29 July.

  I am committed to implementing an integrated public health response to substance misuse, with the twin aims of reducing harm and supporting recovery. Working in partnership with task forces and Community Healthcare Organisations, I am confident that the allocation of additional resources in 2019 will make a significant contribution to achieving this objective.

Services for People with Disabilities

 471. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of respite hours provided for adolescents with an intellectual disability in each of the years 2008 to 2018, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28071/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities. The Programme for Partnership Government states that the Government wishes to provide more accessible respite care to facilitate full support for people with a disability.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy

Disability Services Data

 472. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of persons on the waiting list for residential care for adults with an intellectual disability in each of the years 2008 to 2018, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28072/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities. The Programme for Partnership Government states that the Government wishes to provide more accessible respite care to facilitate full support for people with a disability.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy

Respite Care Services Data

 473. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of respite hours provided for adolescents with an intellectual disability in each of the years 2008 to 2018, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28089/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities. The Programme for Partnership Government states that the Government wishes to provide more accessible respite care to facilitate full support for people with a disability.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy

Respite Care Services Data

 474. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of respite hours provided for adults with an intellectual disability in each of the years 2008 to 2018, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28090/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities. The Programme for Partnership Government states that the Government wishes to provide more accessible respite care to facilitate full support for people with a disability.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy

Mental Health Services Data

 475. Deputy James Browne Information on James Browne Zoom on James Browne asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of mental health beds available in each LHO; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28106/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Jim Daly): Information on Jim Daly Zoom on Jim Daly As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Disabilities Assessments

 476. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when a child (details supplied) in County Cork will have an assessment of need carried out; the date they joined the list; the current number of the child on the list; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28107/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.


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