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Reilly, James

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.


Report of the Expert Group on the Judgment in the A, B and C v. Ireland Case: Statements

I am pleased to have the opportunity to make this statement on the report of the expert group on the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in A, B and C v. Ireland.

&n...More Button

Report of the Expert Group on the Judgment in the A, B and C v. Ireland Case: Statements (Continued)

The report then describes the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in A, B and C v. Ireland and its legal implications. The report maintains: the State is under obligation to do t...More Button

Health Insurance (Amendment) Bill 2012: Report and Final Stages (Continued)

The Health Insurance Act regulates how private health insurance is provided for those who choose to purchase it. Currently, the figure amounts to 46% of the population. This has always been a rem...More Button

I agree with Deputy Billy Kelleher in the sentiments he expressed. Young people are not being discouraged from entering the market. I hope the Deputy joins me in calling on insurers to provide st...More Button

Deputy Denis Naughten made an interesting point about smoking. We want to see the Bill passed as quickly as possible because it will have an impact on the market early in the new year. However,...More Button

The best way to ensure health insurance will be affordable for everyone is to reduce costs. This must be done. I have issued clear riding instructions to the new CEO and chairman of VHI that I ...More Button

We can also cease paying by the day and pay by procedure. Private and public hospitals that are efficient in getting in patients on the day of a procedure and home quickly, with low readmission ...More Button

One of the main purposes of the Bill is to enhance intergenerational solidarity and solidarity between the healthy and the less healthy. This is reflected in my amendment to the Bill which broad...More Button

I take on board what the Deputy is saying. Insurers are locked in competition for younger customers because that is where they make their greatest profit. For that reason, they will not cut price...More Button

We have already undertaken to discuss lifetime community rating with insurers. People take out insurance for the cover. In my experience, they also take it out because they want to have a one-...More Button

I hope that clarifies matters for the Deputy. I am afraid I will not be accepting the amendment. More Button

Sadly, Deputy Ó Caoláin has misconstrued the situation, which is a recurring problem. This universal health insurance, as outlined and committed to in the programme for Government, is not based on...More Button

The Deputy alluded to the IMPACT study. Our system will be based on a multi-payer model and will be underpinned by the principle of social solidarity, as I have said. Indeed, the Deputy quoted ...More Button

The IMPACT report appears to assume the Government plans to implement the Dutch model in full. This is not the case. I have made it clear on numerous occasions that what we liked about the Dutc...More Button

We are not looking at any one model. We are looking at all models and we taking from each one of them what we feel is the best solution for our country in the 21st century. We are completely re...More Button

The IMPACT report argues for more analysis of a single payer model and cites Germany and France as examples of single payer models. These models both involve multiple insurance funds. The repor...More Button

In essence, from a technical point of view, the principle objective of this Bill relates only to those who have chosen to avail of private health insurance cover. The issue of the basis on which...More Button

I will deal with the last point. I would not have been greatly impressed with the role the HIA had in the past. It is intended to beef it up considerably so it can act as a regulator. One is nea...More Button

However, it will be independent and will protect the consumer, define the standard policy to be available and monitor very closely any products created by the insurance companies to ensure there is...More Button

I emphasise there will be competing insurers, with at least one public in the new arrangements. Ultimately the amendment has no relevance to the Bill, which relates to the current market and to ...More Button

I thank the Deputy and while I share the sentiment, as I explained on Committee State, the previous risk equalisation scheme in 2003 was mainly set out in regulations. The new scheme, including ra...More Button

As I explained in my Second Stage contribution, I will make regulations to deal with the administration of the scheme, rather than the scheme itself, as provided for in the Bill. The regulations...More Button

Deputy Naughten's amendment aims to encourage people to stay or become involved in health insurance and make sure they will go into universal health insurance. The key point there is that universa...More Button

The White Paper on universal health insurance, which will be published next year as opposed to the paper which is coming out in a couple of weeks, will outline the details of the universal health...More Button

The health insurance (risk equalisation) Bill provides for the introduction of a permanent scheme of risk equalisation. Therefore, I do not consider it appropriate to insert an amendment in the ...More Button

I am aware of the concerns of the Deputies and consumers alike about the cost of health insurance and I have outlined some of the areas which I want to tackle next. In fairness to the VHI, I mus...More Button

The VHI has also introduced a payment system for radiologists and pathologists based on the national quality benchmarks which will lead to reduced length of stay and has the potential to save ano...More Button

The challenge for all of us must be to ensure that the health market remains viable and relevant, in particular given its role in supporting the provision of services in the public sector but als...More Button

I hope to have the interim paper from the implementation group on universal health insurance by 18 or 19 December 2012. I will not accept Deputy Naughten's amendment. I hope he will understand ...More Button

I reassure Deputy Naughten there is no need for a sunset clause because the provision exists for me to close this by setting the daily rate at nil.More Button

With the Leas-Cheann Comhairle's permission, I wish to provide the House with some information. On Committee Stage I gave the details of the risk equalisation credits but it would be remiss of me ...More Button

  The Dáil adjourned at 10.03 p.m. until 10.30 a.m. on Wednesday, 5 December 2012.More Button

Equality Issues

Was asked: the action he intends to take to address his Department's failure on two occasions to comply with the Equal Status Acts in its administration of the mobility allowance and motorised transport grant...More Button

Was asked: if he will implement the recommendation of the Ombudsman in ensuring that the motorised transport grant scheme is operated in accordance with the requirements of the Equal Status Act More Button

Home Care Packages

Was asked: if he will outline the tendering system for home care projects; if there is a roll-over tendering system; when the tendering process starts and finishes; and if he will make a statement on the matt...More Button

Was asked: if he will review the provision of home care assistance in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if he will provide the number of tenders to date, for home care projects; the estimated numbers for next year; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Health Insurance Prices

Was asked: if he will provide a means by which a person who ceases their private health insurance payments before the end of their contract, based on an inability to pay, may be exempted from the requirement ...More Button

Was asked: if he will outline the treatment of the Government health insurance levy when persons in financial difficulties either cancel or downgrade their policies; if there is a mechanism available to recla...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 557 and 617 together.

  I recently published the Health Insurance (Amendment) Bill, 2012 on 18 October, which provides for a permanent Risk Equal...More Button

Social Welfare Appeals Delays

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 414 of 27 November 2012 and in view of additional documentation since forwarded, if he will detail what happened to a basic payment appeal lodged with and ackn...More Button

The Health Service Executive had responsibility for operating the Community Welfare Service prior to the transfer of this function and the associated staff to the Department of Social Protection on...More Button

Water Fluoridation

Was asked: if he will provide a breakdown in tabular form of the annual cost of water fluoridation and the quantities used since 2000.More Button

Was asked: if he has given consideration to studies and reports regarding the fluoridation of water supplies and the way the fluoridation of water here differs from other countries; if he has a view or recomm...More Button

Vaccination Programme

Was asked: if his Department will consider the introduction of the MenB vaccine when it is licensed early in the new year; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: following approval of the new 4CMenB vaccine, which is developed by pharmaceutical company Novartis, by the European Medicines Agency, when it is envisaged the vaccine will be granted a licence for...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 560 and 668 together.More Button

NIAC is a committee of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland comprising of experts in a number of specialties including infectious diseases, paediatrics and public health. The committee's re...More Button

Should NIAC advice recommend the inclusion of a new vaccine into the primary childhood immunisation programme in Ireland, my Department, in association with the National Immunisation Office will ...More Button

Was asked: the position regarding the commitment he gave to the members of Sufferers of Unique Narcolepsy Disorder that a paper would be put to Government urgently which would propose a package of supports to...More Button

Was asked: his views on correspondence (details supplied) regarding narcolepsy.More Button

Was asked: the date on which he plans to present the paper outlining the package of supports being put in place for those affected by Narcolepsy associated with the vaccine Pandemrix; the reason for the delay...More Button

Was asked: when will a proposal be put to Dáil Éireann setting out a package of supports for those who developed narcolepsy as a result of vaccination with Pandemrix; the reason for the delay in bringing the ...More Button

Was asked: when the paper outlining details of a proposed package of supports for sufferers of narcolepsy will be published More Button

Was asked: when he hopes to announce the support the State will be providing to those children who have been identified by the final report of the National Narcolepsy Study Steering Committee as being adverse...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 581, 583, 588, 590, 628 and 667 together.More Button

I am committed to bringing a Memorandum to Government setting out the full response to the issue. My Department is considering all possible supports which may need to be put in place for those af...More Button

Hospital Staff Issues

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to the practice of hospitals bringing in staff on overtime during closure days on wards in an effort to prevent penalties being imposed by his Department for failing...More Button

Since it was established last year, the SDU has been working to unblock access to acute services by improving patient journeys through the system through encouraging hospitals to better manage thei...More Button

The measures being taken are working; by the end of September the number of adults waiting more than nine months had fallen by more than 90% on the figure at the start of the year (4678 in Jan do...More Button

Improving access to outpatient services is the next priority, which is why for the first time, clear and comprehensive data on this problem is being reported. The data being collected will allow ...More Button

There is no intention to impose financial penalties on hospitals in relation to achieving waiting time targets. The SDU will continue to work with the HSE and the NTPF in order to ensure that wai...More Button

Was asked: the required complement of radiographers to satisfy the needs of Kerry General Hospital; the cost of employing each radiographer on a fixed term contract directly per annum by the Health Service Ex...More Button

In relation to the queries raised by the Deputy, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy in this matter.More Button

Sick Pay Scheme Reform

Was asked: the rate of absenteeism for year to date by region; the cost of absenteeism by region broken down by staffing categories; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

As a result of Labour Court recommendations, reformed sick leave rules across the public service are being introduced over the next 15 months:

-   A halving of self-certifie...More Button

Departmental Agencies Staff Data

Was asked: if he will report on the numbers of staff, levels of income and expenditure at the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland; if he will indicate the levels and amount of fees levied by the Society on the ...More Button

Pharmacy Regulations

Was asked: if he will indicate the current position on the rollout of the system of invigilation of the pharmacy sector by the Pharmaceutical Society and whether that system includes any early warning or medi...More Button

Departmental Funding

Was asked: the reason the rehabilitation grant was cut in October and backdated to 1 January resulting in a 7% cut rather than the 3.7% suggested More Button

General Practitioner Services

Was asked: his plans to roll out free general practitioner care for all by 2015; the way it will be funded; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

General Medical Services Scheme Administration

Was asked: the progress that has been made on advancing the commitment in the Health Service Executive Service Plan 2012; if he will enhance access to psychotherapy and counselling services for those eligible...More Button

Was asked: the progress that has been made on advancing the commitment in the Health Service Executive Service Plan 2012; if he will enhance access to psychotherapy and counselling service for those eligible ...More Button

Was asked: the way psychotherapists apply to provide subsidised therapy to patients eligible for the medical card; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Home Help Service Provision

Was asked: if he will provide an update on the current position of Health Service Executive and SIPTU engagement regarding home help contracts; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

On 29 June 2012, the Labour Court recommended that the HSE and SIPTU should engage in relation to matters concerning home help contracts and that in the event that there are any outstanding issues,...More Button

Having met with the parties again on 15 October 2012, the Labour Court recommended that they should re-engage under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission (LRC). The parties met under th...More Button

Was asked: the number of home help staff employed directly by the Health Service Executive to provide home help services in County Louth in 2011 and 2012; the average hourly rate paid to home helps in the cou...More Button

Was asked: if he will provide a breakdown in terms of hours allocated to the home help service in County Louth to the Health Service Executive public provider compared to private sector providers; the sum pai...More Button

Was asked: if he will provide a breakdown in terms of hours allocated to the home help service nationally in terms of the Health Service Executive public provider compared to private sector providers; the sum...More Button

Was asked: if he will review the provision of home care assistance to a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 188 of 7 November 2012, when will a reply be provided to this question; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if he will reconsider the Health Service Executive's decision not to provide home help to a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the position regarding home help hours in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Domiciliary Care Allowance Applications

Was asked: the position regarding domiciliary care allowance in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Wicklow; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Services for People with Disabilities

Was asked: if he will ensure that there are no further cuts in funding for Prosper Fingal in view of the vital services they provide to persons with intellectual disabilities; if his attention has been drawn ...More Button

Was asked: his views on correspondence (details supplied) and if he will respond to the issues highlighted More Button

Was asked: when the proposed independent inspectors of voluntary and private sector intellectual disability services in this country will commence; when he will publish new regulations on standards regarding ...More Button

Was asked: the reason there are no independent inspections of private or voluntary intellectual disability services here More Button

Was asked: the criteria for a child to qualify for a bone-anchored hearing aid procedure and the number of children with Downs' syndrome that have benefited from it for the years 2009, 2010 and 2011; and if h...More Button

Was asked: if levels of transport conveying persons with learning disabilities to the Brothers of Charity centre in Kilrush, County Clare, will be maintained; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Medical Card Applications

Was asked: if he will expedite the medical card application in respect of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 16; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the position regarding a medical card in respect of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 8; and if an exemption can be made in view of the extenuating circumstances of this applicationMore Button

Was asked: when a decision will be made on a medical card application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Mayo; the reason for the delay in issuing a reply; and if he will make a statement on ...More Button

Was asked: when a decision will issue on a medical card renewal application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Mayo; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: when a decision will issue on a medical card application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Mayo; the reason for the delay in issuing a reply; and if he will make a statement on th...More Button

Was asked: the position regarding a medical card application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: If he will expedite an application for a medical card in respect of persons (details supplied) in County Kildare; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) has been refused a medical card.More Button

Health Services Provision

Was asked: if he will roll out nationally the Ulysses pain management programme that began in Tallaght hospital, Dublin, in 2002 and has helped dramatically improve the lives of persons with this condition; i...More Button

As regards to this particular issue, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy in this matter.More Button

  Question No. 575 answered with Question No. 569.More Button

Was asked: if specific services will be made available to a child (details supplied) in County Cork at the earliest date possible in view of the necessity and substantial benefit of early intervention.More Button

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

Was asked: in relation to services and supports for persons with neurological conditions, if he will take action along the lines identified by the Neurological Alliance of Ireland to continue to invest in the...More Button

The HSE Clinical Programmes Directorate are currently developing appropriate models of care to ensure the delivery of safe and effective services across epilepsy, stroke services and neurology serv...More Button

  Question No. 588 answered with Question No. 581.More Button

  Question No. 589 answered with Question No. 582.More Button

Was asked: in relation to the proposed roll-out of the Health Service Executive programme for the restructuring of children's therapy services, if the Health Service Executive has a cohesive plan in relation ...More Button

Was asked: in relation to the proposed roll-out of the Health Service Executive programme for the restructuring of children's therapy services, the role that will be undertaken by parents as reps and if expen...More Button

Was asked: in relation to the proposed roll-out of the Health Service Executive programme for the restructuring of children's therapy services, the primary motivation for the radical changes; where the fundin...More Button

Was asked: in relation to the proposed roll-out of the Health Service Executive programme for the restructuring of children's therapy services, the country that has an equivalent model on which this project i...More Button

Was asked: in relation to the proposed roll-out of the Health Service Executive programme for the restructuring of children's therapy services, the way the reconfiguration will impact on services as they curr...More Button

Was asked: in relation to the proposed roll-out of the Health Service Executive programme for the restructuring of children's therapy service, if his attention has been drawn to the fact that parents only bec...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 608 to 613, inclusive, together.

  Disability health services for children are organised and delivered very differently across the country becaus...More Button

Was asked: the changes and practices that have been introduced since the 2011 ISQSH Patient Survey; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

 All forms of patient feedback received by the HSE about patients' experience of health services are combined with the results of other methods of patient feedback to inform the ongoing work o...More Button

Was asked: the range of services which Co-operation and Working Together manages and delivers that are supported by the EU Structural Fund initiative, INTERREG IVA. More Button

Co-operation and Working Together (CAWT) is involved in cross-border collaborative working in the field of health and social care and also manages and delivers a range of activities that are being ...More Button

Was asked: if his Department and the Health Service Executive have any plans to establish specialist facilities for the treatment and support of children with Ehler's Danios syndrome; if he will provide detai...More Button

In relation to the query raised by the Deputy, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy in this matter.More Button

Capital Programme Expenditure

Was asked: in respect of the October Exchequer returns, the reason capital spending for his Department was €32 million below profile for this period; his plans to ensure that the full capital spending is impl...More Button

My Department's capital expenditure was not under profile by €32m at the end of October 2012. However the HSE's net capital expenditure was under profile by €23m at end October 2012. It is assum...More Button

Domestic Violence Incidence

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 488 of September 2011, in which he advised that the Health Service Executive was undertaking to investigate potential avenues of funding for the only specialis...More Button

Was asked: the position regarding a residential unit (details supplied) in County Kildare for victims of domestic violence; the funding allocation for the unit for this year; the way he proposes to make use o...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 591 and 592 together.More Button

In 2010 the National Strategy on Domestic, Sexual and Gender-based Violence was published. It aims to provide a framework for sustainable intervention to prevent and effectively respond to domes...More Button

Nationally the HSE funds 42 frontline domestic violence service providers. 20 of these provide refuge accommodation and this number has risen from 15 since 2000. The services provide a wide ran...More Button

Was asked: if he will indicate the safe ratio of staff for a domestic violence refuge, including any children that may need care and supervision; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

In the context of increased demand for domestic violence services, the HSE is conducting a national and regional review of domestic, sexual and gender-based violence services that are funded by the...More Button

The HSE's National Office for Domestic, Sexual and Gender based Violence Services funds 42 frontline domestic violence service providers. 20 of these provide refuge accommodation and this number...More Button

Was asked: the number of domestic violence refuges that are in operation here; the catchment areas they serve; the average number of residents in each unit for 2010, 2011 and to date in 2012; and if he will m...More Button

Was asked: the cost of running each of the State's domestic violence refuges; the amount budgeted for each domestic violence refuge in 2012; the staffing complement and resident capacity of each domestic viol...More Button

Was asked: the number of families who have been refused stay at a domestic violence refuge here in 2012; the number of residents accepted in the same year; if he will break these figures down by each individu...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 594 to 596, inclusive, together.More Button

In 2010 the National Strategy on Domestic, Sexual and Gender-based Violence was published. It aims to provide a framework for sustainable intervention to prevent and effectively respond to domes...More Button

Nationally the HSE funds 42 frontline domestic violence service providers. 20 of these provide refuge accommodation and this number has risen from 15 since 2000. The services provide a wide ran...More Button

Was asked: the number of incidents of a violent nature that have taken place in domestic violence refuges, whether against staff or against residents, in 2011 and to date in 2012; and if he will make a statem...More Button

In 2010 the National Strategy on Domestic, Sexual and Gender-based Violence was published. It aims to provide a framework for sustainable intervention to prevent and effectively respond to domesti...More Button

Nationally the HSE funds 42 frontline domestic violence service providers. 20 of these provide refuge accommodation and this number has risen from 15 since 2000. The services provide a wide ran...More Button

Hospital Services

Was asked: the reason six cystic fibrosis patients were sent home from St. Vincent's Hospital, Dublin, on 26 November 2012. More Button

Was asked: if he will provide an update on the expansion of the Cystic Fibrosis unit at St. James' Hospital, Dublin, to facilitate its planned 34 patient capacity; and if he will make a statement on the matte...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 597 and 672 together.

  St Vincent's University Hospital (SVUH) is the designated National Adult Referral Centre for patients with Cystic Fibrosi...More Button

Was asked: the ear, nose and throat services available at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda, County Louth; the number of ENT consultants based in the hospital; and when they treat patients at the hospi...More Button

Immediately following his appointment, the Minister for Health established the Special Delivery Unit, as set out in the Programme for Government. The aim of the SDU is to unblock access to acute s...More Button

For adults, the target is that no-one should be waiting more than nine months for inpatient and day case treatments. Overall, by the end of September progress towards the target is strong – the ...More Button

Improving access to outpatient services is the next priority. A maximum waiting time target has now been set of 12 months for a first time outpatient appointment by 30 November 2013. In relatio...More Button

Health Services Staff Issues

Was asked: the amount of money paid to agency staff in County Kerry working for the Health Service Executive for the accounting period November 2011 to November 2012 on a monthly basis; and if he will make a ...More Button

In the health service, agency staff have traditionally been used to meet a short-term service need or where some flexibility in staffing a service is required. Agency staff may be used only in the ...More Button

Ambulance Service Response Times

Was asked: if he will state the policy and the procedure that is followed by the Health Service Executive National Ambulance Service in responding to an emergency call in cases when the most appropriate treat...More Button

Policies and procedures for the National Ambulance Service are set by the Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC) and the HSE and are operational matters for the HSE. Accordingly, as the quest...More Button

Substance Misuse

Was asked: when he plans to publish the action plan to implement the recommendations in the report of the national substance misuse steering group published on 7 February 2012; and if he will make a statement...More Button

Was asked: if he has considered the proposal from the National Youth Council of Ireland contained in their pre-budget submission to his Department to introduce a 1% social responsibility levy on the turnover ...More Button

Was asked: the action he has taken to progress the commitment made at the conference on alcohol misuse in Armagh in January 2012 to work with the Northern Executive on the introduction of minimum pricing on a...More Button

Was asked: his plans to hold a conference, seminar or other event on alcohol misuse policy in the context of the Irish Presidency of the European Union next year; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 601 to 604, inclusive, together.More Button

The National Substance Misuse Strategy Steering Group reported in February of this year and it made a range of important recommendations in order to deal with the persistent problem of alcohol mi...More Button

The Deputy's question relating to the inclusion of alcohol on the agenda of Ireland's Presidency is indeed pertinent given that the prospect for a new European Union Strategy on Alcohol is being ...More Button

My Department is developing concrete proposals on the basis of the recommendations of the report of the National Substance Misuse Strategy Steering Group - including the recommendations on a soci...More Button

Alcohol Advertising

Was asked: if he has received the sixth report of the alcohol marketing communications body; his plan to publish same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Was asked: the number of meetings held by the Alcohol Marketing Communications Monitoring Body in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and to date in 2012; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Was asked: if he will provide detail of the payments made to the Advertising Standards Authority of Ireland to oversee and monitor the Alcohol Marketing, Communications and Sponsorship Codes since the establi...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 605 to 607, inclusive, together.

  I have seen the sixth report of the Alcohol Marketing Communications Monitoring Body (AMCMB) and have approved...More Button

Hospital Waiting Lists

Was asked: if he will address the waiting lists for ear nose and throat services at Kerry General Hospital where currently 739 adults and 427 children are on the waiting list; if his attention has been drawn ...More Button

Immediately following his appointment, the Minister for Health established the Special Delivery Unit, as set out in the Programme for Government. The aim of the SDU is to unblock access to acute se...More Button

For adults, the target is that no-one should be waiting more than nine months for inpatient and day case treatments. Overall, by the end of September progress towards the target is strong – the n...More Button

Improving access to outpatient services is the next priority. A maximum waiting time target has now been set of 12 months for a first time outpatient appointment by 30 November 2013. In relatio...More Button

  Question No. 615 answered with Question No. 582.More Button

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to the fact that a person (details supplied), who is extremely ill, has to wait nine months for an operation in Beaumont Hospital, DublinMore Button

The management of inpatient and daycase waiting lists for patients awaiting public health care is based on the principle that after urgent and cancer patients are treated, then clinically assessed ...More Button

  Question No. 617 answered with Question No. 557.More Button

Was asked: the position regarding an operation in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; if she will expedite this matter; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The management of inpatient and daycase waiting lists for patients awaiting public health care is based on the principle that after urgent and cancer patients are treated, then clinically assessed ...More Button

Was asked: if he will respond to reports (details attached) that more than 23,000 persons are awaiting up to four years to see a consultant at the Mid-Western Regional Hospital in County Limerick; and if he w...More Button

A priority action for the HSE has been the development and implementation of standardised reporting for outpatient access through the HSE Outpatient Data Quality Programme. This has enabled report...More Button

Building on the work done by the HSE, the National Treatment Purchase Fund has now taken over the collection of outpatient waiting time data. Its methodology replicates the approach taken with th...More Button

A maximum waiting time target of 12 months for a first time outpatient appointment by 30 November 2013, 26 weeks by 30 November 2014 and 13 weeks by Nov 2015 are the goals for the HSE and the SDU...More Button

  Question No. 672 answered with Question No. 597.More Button

Diabetes Strategy

Was asked: the hospitals here that provide insulin pump treatment to children; and the number of children who receive this treatment in each hospitalMore Button

Was asked: the number of children from County Donegal who receive insulin pump treatment in hospitals outside County Donegal; the hospitals to which they must travel; and if he will make a statement on the ma...More Button

Was asked: if he has considered providing an insulin pump service in Letterkenny, County Donegal; if this has been costed by the Health Service Executive; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 618 to 620, inclusive, together.More Button

The HSE National Clinical Programme for Diabetes - which includes the care of children and adolescents with diabetes - was established within the Clinical Strategy and Programmes Directorate. The p...More Button

Medicinal Products Supply

Was asked: if he will ensure that antiepileptic drugs will be excluded from generic substitution as recommended by the Moran report in view of the fact that a number of other EU countries do not allow for sub...More Button

Was asked: if there will be any changes to generic branded drugs legislation; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Proposed Legislation

Was asked: if the commitment in the Programme for Government to establish a patient safety authority still stands; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

My Department is continuing to consider the options and possible organisational structures of the Patient Safety Agency (PSA) taking account of the international experience and the existing and eme...More Button

Budget Consultation Process

Was asked: the organisations he met in the preparation for Budget 2013; the organisations that sought a meeting but had their request declined; and the reason for these decisions. More Button

I did not meet with any organisations during the preparation for Budget 2013. The following organisations requested to meet with me but regrettably I was unable to facilitate them: Irish Dental Ass...More Button

Medical Card Appeals

Was asked: the reason it takes an average four to six weeks for a medical card file that has been refused by the PCRS in Dublin to reach appeals in County Donegal; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Drugs Payment Scheme Administration

Was asked: his views on reintroducing the indicative drugs target saving scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if there are any regulations or restrictions in place for the drugs payment scheme that prevent a patient from obtaining two months supply of their prescription in any one month period; and if he w...More Button

General Medical Services Scheme Review

Was asked: the cost of providing free general practitioner care for all newborns for one yearMore Button

Cross-Border Co-operation

Was asked: if he will outline the projects on which his Department cooperates with the Department of Health, Social Service and Public Safety in the NorthMore Button

My Department is involved in ongoing North South engagement. Collaboration takes place on a wide range of health and social care issues including, for example, Radiotherapy Services, Paediatric Co...More Button

Was asked: the nature and outcomes of north-south cooperation in the areas of radiotherapy services, paediatric congenital cardiac services, health promotion, cancer research, food safety and suicide preventi...More Button

My Department is involved in ongoing North South engagement.

  Radiotherapy Services   Department of Health and HSE officials are working in conjunction wi...More Button

Hospital Accommodation

Was asked: if he has plans to refurbish the ear, nose and throat department of Beaumont Hospital, Dublin 9; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Any proposal to refurbish the ear, nose and throat department at Beaumont Hospital must be considered in the context of the HSE's multi-annual capital programme. The HSE is required to prioritise ...More Button

Addiction Treatment Services

Was asked: if he will make provision in Budget 2013 for adequate capital funding to enable the proposed extension to the Talbot Grove Addiction Treatment Centre, Castleisland, County Kerry, to proceed, and en...More Button

Mental Health Services Report

Was asked: if he will help ensure that the promise to invest €35 million annually in community mental health is honoured; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Audiology Services

Was asked: if additional audiology services detailed in response to Health Forum motion (details supplied) have been implemented in County Kerry More Button

Medical Aids and Appliances Applications

Was asked: when a hearing aid will be provided in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Medical Card Drugs

Was asked: the position regarding a medical card in respect of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 5.More Button

Drugs Task Forces

Was asked: if he has completed his review of the drug task forces; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Compensation Tribunals

Was asked: if he will provide details of moneys paid to members of the Hepatitis C and HIV Compensation Tribunal; the work required of each member to fulfil his or her duties; and if he will make a statement ...More Button

Under Section 3 of the Hepatitis C Compensation Tribunal Act l997, the Minister for Health appoints the members of the Hepatitis C and HIV Compensation Tribunal. The remuneration for Tribunal memb...More Button

The Tribunal carries out judicial type functions and is therefore very different to a typical State Board. It hears claims in relation to persons infected with Hepatitis C or HIV through the adm...More Button

Child Access and Visitation Rights

Was asked: the extent to which an alleged incident reported on the 23 of March resulted in one of the parents being deprived of visitation rights in respect of their children in the case of a person (details ...More Button

I understand that my Department has been in contact with the Deputy seeking further information in relation to this incident. Without this clarification it is not possible for me to answer this qu...More Button

Care of the Elderly

Was asked: if he will provide an update on efforts to retain all services at St. Brigid's Hospital, Crooksling, Brittas, County Dublin; if he will appreciate the concerns of the wider community on this issue;...More Button

Ambulance Service Provision

Was asked: the number of ambulance managers that have access to Health Service Executive cars in the course of their work; the number that are allowed to bring them to their private homes; and if he will make...More Button

The roles of certain paramedic staff in the National Ambulance Service may require that, when on call, they have specially-equipped vehicles available to them at their homes to facilitate rapid res...More Button

Medical Card Reviews

Was asked: the reason a medical card has been revoked in respect of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Departmental Reports

Was asked: when he will publish the report on health spending commissioned from the World Health Organisation and the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies; the conclusions of the report; his vi...More Button

My Department invited the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, an international partnership hosted by the World Health Organisation, to prepare a report on the implications for the ...More Button

Tax Code

Was asked: his views, in view of the increase in obesity and the associated negative health effects on the introduction of a tax on sugar sweetened beverages, some of which contain a person's entire World Hea...More Button

Given the increases in obesity, especially in children and teenagers, and the links between obesity and chronic diseases such as Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular risk. I am considering a range of...More Button

For these reasons, I have been considering a Sugar Sweetened Drinks levy and the need to provide an evidence base. I asked my Department to establish a Steering Group to oversee the carrying out ...More Button

Calorie Posting on Menus

Was asked: if, in view of the increasing significance of the obesity issue, consideration will be given to introducing regulations which will make the publication of nutritional information, such as calorie a...More Button

Given the increases in obesity, especially in children and teenagers, and the links between obesity and chronic diseases such as Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular risk. I am considering a range of...More Button

Medicinal Products Licensing

Was asked: if he will report on the progress made of introducing the medical product, Sativex, which is used to treat the symptoms of multiple sclerosis and which has passed through all stages of the European...More Button

Health Insurance Claims

Was asked: when the Health Service Executive will confirm insurance payment issues in respect of persons (details supplied) in County Limerick; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I understand that this issue concerns the payment of maternity costs arising for a private patient at Limerick Maternity Hospital. My Department has referred the matter to the HSE for examination ...More Button

Medical Cards

Was asked: if a medical card will be reinstated in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button