Houses of the Oireachtas

All parliamentary debates are now being published on our new website. The publication of debates on this website will cease in December 2018.

Go to oireachtas.ie

 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 734-755
 Header Item Respite Care Services Provision
 Header Item Home Help Service Provision
 Header Item Abortion Services Provision
 Header Item Special Educational Needs Service Provision
 Header Item Services for People with Disabilities
 Header Item Psychological Services
 Header Item Hospital Services
 Header Item Health Services Provision
 Header Item Services for People with Disabilities
 Header Item Nursing Homes Support Scheme Applications
 Header Item Hospital Waiting Lists
 Header Item Health Promotion
 Header Item Hospital Services
 Header Item General Practitioner Services Provision
 Header Item Assisted Human Reproduction Services Provision
 Header Item Data Protection
 Header Item Hospital Acquired Infections
 Header Item Hospital Acquired Infections
 Header Item Hospital Acquired Infections
 Header Item Speech and Language Therapy Provision
 Header Item Hospital Deaths

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 970 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 120 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 734-755

Respite Care Services Provision

 734. Deputy Fergus O'Dowd Information on Fergus O'Dowd Zoom on Fergus O'Dowd asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris his plans to provide alternative respite care whilst the renovations of the Boyne View Centre, Drogheda is being refurbished; the details of the project; his further plans to minimise the impact to service users; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24904/18]

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.

Home Help Service Provision

 735. Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh Information on Aengus Ó Snodaigh Zoom on Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the status of an application by a person (details supplied) for five hours home help; and when they can expect a decision on their case. [24911/18]

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.

Abortion Services Provision

 736. Deputy Catherine Connolly Information on Catherine Connolly Zoom on Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if, in view of the previous history of rogue abortion counselling services and the general lack of proper psychological services in this area, he will further prioritise professional services for women considering abortion in addition to the speedy and effective rolling out of the arrangements for the statutory registration of counsellors and psychotherapists; the timeline up to the point of the actual registration of individual practitioners and the protection of titles; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24915/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris Regulations to designate the professions of counsellor and psychotherapist under the Health and Social Care Professionals Act 2005 were approved by both houses of the Oireachtas on 22 March 2018. I am pleased to advise that I have since signed the regulations, which will come into force on 2 July 2018.

Work is now underway to appoint the 13 member registration board which will regulate the professions. The Public Appointments Service will undertake an advertisement campaign later this month inviting suitably qualified and experienced persons to apply for lay and professional positions on the board.

It is envisaged that CORU will arrange for the board to hold its first meeting later this year and begin the substantial programme of work required to establish its registers. This includes advising the Health and Social Care Professionals Council and me as Minister on such outstanding issues as titles to be protected by regulation, the qualifications that ought to be required of existing practitioners in order to register and the making of associated bye-laws.  When the registers are opened, a two year transitional period will commence during which time existing practitioners can apply for registration. When this transitional period expires, both titles will be protected under the Act for the exclusive use of professionals registered with the Counsellor and Psychotherapist Registration Board.

Following the result of the referendum on the Thirty-sixth Amendment of the Constitution Bill, held on 25 May 2018, the Department of Health is working the with Office of the Attorney General to progress the drafting of a Bill to Regulate the Termination of Pregnancy..

Special Educational Needs Service Provision

 737. 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 the reason a person (details supplied) has not yet been contacted on securing a place in school. [24916/18]

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..

Services for People with Disabilities

 738. 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 further to Parliamentary Question No. 305 of 6 February 2018, the reason students that started after 2012 are not entitled to transport to assist them getting to and from the service; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24917/18]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath As the Deputy's question relates to a service matter, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive for direct reply to the Deputy. 

Psychological Services

 739. 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 if a primary care psychologist will be found during a period (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24918/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As this question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply.

Hospital Services

 740. 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 if a person (details supplied) is entitled to convalescent care for post-operation from Tullamore General Hospital. [24919/18]

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.

Health Services Provision

 741. 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 if a situation relating to transport for a person (details supplied) in County Kildare will be examined. [24920/18]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath As the Deputy's question relates to a service matter, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive for direct reply to the Deputy. 

Services for People with Disabilities

 742. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of children in Cork city and county on the waiting list for an assessment of need; the number waiting by periods (details supplied) in each HSE area in the county; the expected waiting time for a child being put on the waiting list today by each HSE area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24921/18]

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..

Nursing Homes Support Scheme Applications

 743. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett Information on Richard Boyd Barrett Zoom on Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if in the case of a fair deal scheme being granted to an applicant, if the money can be backdated to the day of application in the event that the applicant had to go into a nursing home in advance of the decision on application being made; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24931/18]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Jim Daly): Information on Jim Daly Zoom on Jim Daly The Nursing Homes Support Scheme is a system of financial support for those in need of long-term nursing home care. Participants contribute to the cost of their care according to their means while the State pays the balance of the cost. The Scheme aims to ensure that long-term nursing home care is accessible and affordable for everyone and that people are cared for in the most appropriate settings.

The Department of Health agree a set level of funding for the NHSS with the HSE each year having regard for the demand for the Scheme and the overall fiscal position. The 2018 budget for NHSS is €962m. In order to manage the demand for the Scheme over a 12 month period, the HSE has a target of maintaining the wait time for funding approval at no more than 4 weeks. This target has consistently been achieved since April 2015 and it is a significant reduction from the October 2014 wait time of 15 weeks. The target of 4 weeks for approval of funding remains a commitment in the Programme for a Partnership Government.  State support can only be paid once a financial assessment has been completed and authorised.

The National Guidelines for the Standardised Implementation of the NHSS provide that State Support and the Nursing Home Loan should be paid in respect of qualified applicants from either the date that the application is approved, or date of admission to the nursing home whichever is the later. Therefore in the case where an applicant is already residing in a nursing home when they apply for State support through NHSS this support will be paid from the date that the application is approved and cannot be backdated to the admission date.

This provision enables the HSE to manage the budget and commitments under the Scheme over a 12 month period, ensuring that long-term residential care remains accessible and affordable for those that require it..

Hospital Waiting Lists

 744. Deputy Lisa Chambers Information on Lisa Chambers Zoom on Lisa Chambers asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the position a person (details supplied) is on the waiting list for urgent back surgery in both Mayo University Hospital and University Hospital Galway; the estimated waiting time for this surgical procedure; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24938/18]

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, 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..

Health Promotion

 745. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the position of Ireland on the World Health Organization's international code of marketing of breast milk substitutes or later updates of this code; and the way in which Ireland endeavours to meet the requirements of the code. [24946/18]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Catherine Byrne): Information on Catherine Byrne Zoom on Catherine Byrne A key policy priority for my Department and the HSE is to increase the proportion of people who are healthy at all stages of life through the Healthy Ireland Framework, Healthy Ireland – A Framework for Improved Health and Well-being 2013-2025.

This involves addressing risk factors and promoting protective factors at every stage of life, including the period from the pre-natal stage and through childhood, to support health and well-being.

Ireland is committed to the promotion, support and protection of breast-feeding as a priority for children’s health and recognises breast-feeding as the biologically normal feeding method for infants and young children and ensures optimum growth and development.

My Department is aware of the considerable evidence of the importance of breast-feeding to the health of both mothers and infants.  Children who are not breast-fed have a higher incidence and severity of many illnesses and breast-feeding is also a significant protective factor against obesity in children.

My Department and the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommend exclusive breast-feeding of infants for the first 6 months, after which mothers are recommended to continue breast-feeding, in combination with suitably nutritious and safe complementary foods (semi-solid and solid foods) until their children are 2 years of age or older.

The National Maternity Strategy 2016-2026: Creating a Better Future Together (2016) outlines the responsibilities of my Department, our Health Service Executive and the National Women & Infants Health Programme in relation to the promotion, support and protection of breast-feeding.

Actions include improvements in support for breast-feeding both within the hospital and in the community; compliance of all maternity units with the Baby Friendly Health Initiative; implementation of the WHO Code; and breast-feeding promotion campaigns.

The HSE has recently launched a 5 year Breast-feeding Action Plan to increase levels of those both initiating and continuing breast-feeding up to 6 months exclusively and up to 2 years with suitable complementary foods.

The Breast-feeding Action Plan sets out the priority areas to be addressed over the next 5 years to improve breast-feeding supports, to enable more Irish mothers to breast-feed and to improve health outcomes for mothers and children in Ireland. The actions include the implementation of policies at hospital and community level; investment in breast-feeding training and skills development for healthcare staff; the provision of additional lactation specialist posts; and partnership working to promote a culture that accepts and supports breast-feeding maternal education and social class.

One specific action is to strengthen compliance with the International Code of Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes and subsequent World Health Assembly (WHA) resolutions. This will include developing measures to improve and monitor compliance.  The International Code & WHA resolutions will become policy for all Government departments, the HSE & contracted agencies and services. The HSE is drafting a policy to support the International Code of Marketing and this will be implemented by the HSE through partnership & cross- sectorial working and will be ongoing..

Hospital Services

 746. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris further to Parliamentary Question No. 798 of 17 April 2018, when the seven remaining rooms will be operational and fully staffed before the end of 2018 in view of the clear need for same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24972/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The Deputy's question relates to service delivery matters and accordingly I have asked the HSE to respond directly to him.

General Practitioner Services Provision

 747. Deputy John Brady Information on John Brady Zoom on John Brady asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the current general medical services general practitioner in Carnew, County Wicklow has retired earlier than originally anticipated; the position regarding the recruitment of a replacement general medical services general practitioner for the area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24977/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As these questions relate to service matters, I have arranged for the questions to be referred to the Health Service Executive for direct reply to the Deputy.

Assisted Human Reproduction Services Provision

 748. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when IVF funding will be provided; if there is pending legislation in this area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24983/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As the Deputy will be aware, the Government approved the drafting of a Bill on assisted human reproduction (AHR) and associated areas of research in October last year. The introduction of legislation in relation to AHR and associated research is a priority for me and officials in my Department are engaging with the Office of the Attorney General in relation to the process of drafting this Bill. The General Scheme is published on my Department’s website and the Joint Committee on Health is currently conducting a review of the General Scheme of the Assisted Human Reproduction Bill 2017 as part of the pre-legislative scrutiny process, which began in January of this year.

In order to support the commencement of the legislation, officials in my Department will work during 2018 with the HSE to develop a model of care for infertility to ensure the provision of safe, effective and accessible services through the public health system as part of the full range of services available in obstetrics and gynaecology.

Part of this work includes identifying policy options for a potential public funding model for AHR treatment. Once I have had the opportunity to consider these policy options I will bring a Memorandum to Government for a model of public funding for AHR treatment for the Government's consideration and decision.

It should be noted that any funding model that may ultimately be introduced would need to operate within the broader regulatory framework set out in the AHR Bill and a model of care for infertility..

Data Protection

 749. 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 way in which his Department is engaging with the Department of Justice and Equality on section 32 of the Data Protection Act 2018, specifically on the provision for the drawing up of codes of conduct intended to contribute to proper application of GDPR with regard to the processing of the personal data of children for the purposes of direct marketing and creating personality and user profiles (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24992/18]

 750. 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 section 32 of the Data Protection Act 2018, specifically regarding the provision for the drawing up of codes of conduct intended to contribute to proper application of GDPR with regard to the processing of the personal data of children for the purposes of direct marketing and creating personality and user profiles; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24993/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris I propose to take Questions Nos. 749 and 750 together.

Section 32(1)(e) of the Data Protection Act 2018 provides that the Data Protection Commission shall encourage the drawing up of codes of conduct intended to contribute to the proper application of the Data Protection Regulation with regard to the processing of the personal data of children for the purposes of direct marketing and creating personality and user profiles.

I am fully committed to protecting the rights and privacy of all individuals, including children, as provided for in the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Acts.

My Deputy refers to Codes of Practice for the advertising and marketing of food and non-alcoholic drinks. In the context of these Codes, my Department holds no personal data or has no direct involvement in processing personal data of children for the purposes of direct marketing and creating personality and user profiles. These Codes of Practice provide for monitoring for compliance and effectiveness of the Codes by a monitoring body which I will designate. Monitoring will include independent research to assess adherence. The designated monitoring body will have access to relevant data from companies and partner organisations.

Any new processing activity carried out on behalf of the Department in the future, which involves personal data, will be subject to the full requirements of the data protection legislation, including a data protection impact assessment and any other additional safeguards which may be appropriate..

Hospital Acquired Infections

 751. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if the families of the 74 persons who died as a result of CPE in University Hospital Limerick were provided with full information in regard to the risks of CPE colonisation, the precautions required to prevent its spread and the mortality risk when CPE enters the bloodstream following detection of CPE colonisation; and if the external review into the deaths of these persons examined whether full information was provided to families in this regard. [24996/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The Minister and the Department have been kept informed of an External review commissioned last year by University Limerick Hospital Group, regarding patients with CPE.  The HSE has advised that the Review has been completed and the report will be published shortly which will provide information on the management of CPE in University Hospital Limerick. The scope and conduct of Reviews are covered by HSE Policy.  The HSE continues to update the Department on this matter..

Hospital Acquired Infections

 752. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if the families of the 74 persons who died as a result of CPE in University Hospital Limerick were informed that an external review into the deaths was under way and were kept informed as the review progressed. [24997/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The Minister and the Department have been kept informed of an External review commissioned last year by University Limerick Hospital Group, regarding patients with CPE.  The HSE has advised that the Review has been completed and the Report will be published shortly which will provide information on the management of CPE in University Hospital Limerick. The scope and conduct of Reviews are covered by HSE Policy.  The HSE continues to update the Department on this matter..

Hospital Acquired Infections

 753. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if University Hospital Limerick had in place prior to the commencement of the external review into the deaths of 74 persons in whom CPE colonisation was detected, a documented system for informing persons of the risks of CPE, the precautions necessary to prevent its spread and the need to alert other healthcare facilities visited by the person of the fact of CPE colonisation upon admission to that facility. [24998/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The Minister and the Department have been kept informed of an External review commissioned last year by University Limerick Hospital Group, regarding patients with CPE.  The HSE has advised that the Review has been completed and the Report will be published shortly which will provide information on the management of CPE in University Hospital Limerick. The scope and conduct of Reviews are covered by HSE Policy.  The HSE continues to update the Department on this matter..

Speech and Language Therapy Provision

 754. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if a child (details supplied) in County Cork can access speech and language therapy pending their assessment of need being carried out in view of the fact that it is likely to be some time away. [25001/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As this question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply.

Hospital Deaths

 755. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris further to Parliamentary Question No. 142 of 30 May 2018, if a follow-up will be made on an incident (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25003/18]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris I have had the matter investigated by the HSE, and it has advised me that no such incident is known to have taken place.


Last Updated: 03/03/2020 16:36:41 First Page Previous Page Page of 120 Next Page Last Page