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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 604-618
 Header Item Orthodontic Services Waiting Lists
 Header Item Hospitals Funding
 Header Item Hospital Waiting Lists
 Header Item Primary Care Centres Provision
 Header Item Health Services Provision
 Header Item Medical Card Eligibility
 Header Item Hospital Appointments Status
 Header Item Accident and Emergency Departments
 Header Item Ambulance Service Provision
 Header Item Hospital Waiting Lists
 Header Item Health Services Funding
 Header Item Military Aircraft
 Header Item Ministerial Meetings

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 906 No. 4

First Page Previous Page Page of 101 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 604-618

Orthodontic Services Waiting Lists

 604. Deputy Billy Kelleher Information on Billy Kelleher Zoom on Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the number of persons waiting for orthodontic treatment by local health office area for those up to 16 years of age and for those over 16 years of age at the end of December 2015, in tabular form. [7146/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar The HSE provides orthodontic treatment to those who have been assessed and referred for treatment before their 16th birthday. It should be noted that the nature of orthodontic care means that immediate treatment is not always desirable. It is estimated that in up to 5% of cases it is necessary to wait for further growth to take place before treatment commences. Patients are assessed by the HSE Orthodontic Service under the modified Index of Treatment Need. Patients with the greatest level of need i.e. Grade 5 or Grade 4 are provided with treatment by the HSE.

Information on waiting times is collated by the HSE by region and for the intervals as shown below only. The information is not collated by age. In general, those waiting over 4 years would be expected to be 16 years or over since they are usually referred at 12-13 years of age approximately. The information on waiting times for treatment for Quarter 4 of 2015 is as follows:   

Waiting time from assessment to commencement of treatment Less than 2 years2 - 4 yearsOver 4 yearsTOTAL
HSE Dublin Mid-Leinster 3,1741,5774475,198
HSE Dublin North East1,7071,3274663,500
HSE South2,4831,3641644,011
HSE West2,193901273,121
Total9,5575,1691,10415,830

Hospitals Funding

 605. Deputy Billy Kelleher Information on Billy Kelleher Zoom on Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the budget allocation and the budget outturn for 2015, and the budget allocation for 2016 for each public and voluntary hospital in tabular form. [7147/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar The Budget allocation and outturn figures for 2015 are set out in the HSE's December 2015 Performance Report (and are reprinted below for convenience).

  The 2016 budget figures are provisional.

 2015 Outturn2015 Final BudgetBudget 2016**
Acute Hospitals Division - 2015 Outturn & 2016 Budget€000s€000s€000s
RCSI€655,413€648,047€627,926
Beaumont Hospital€260,089€263,325€253,784
Cavan General Hospital€81,994€80,776€78,917
Connolly Hospital, Blanchardstown€93,920€91,194€90,078
Louth County Hospital€19,896€20,004€20,236
Monaghan General Hospital€8,017€8,002€8,010
Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda€143,310€132,885€130,400
RCSI Hosp Grp HQ€0€3,766€507
The Rotunda Hospital€48,187€48,095€45,994
Dublin Midlands€793,887€787,528€768,388
Coombe Women & Infants University Hospital€54,072€54,069€50,433
Dublin Midland Hospital Group€995€1,866€3,558
Midland Regional Hospital, Portlaoise€54,132€52,282€51,676
Midland Regional Hospital, Tullamore€88,055€87,216€84,326
Naas General Hospital€58,391€58,015€56,376
St James's Hospital€323,210€319,598€314,760
St. Lukes Hospital, Rathgar€40,889€40,892€39,854
Tallaght Hospital - AMNCH (Acute Only)€174,142€173,590€167,404
Ireland East€835,939€838,073€814,193
Cappagh National Orthopaedic Hospital, Dublin€28,884€28,921€27,889
Ireland East Hosp Grp HQ€1,633€1,632€2,007
Mater Misercordiae University Hospital€237,306€240,853€230,936
Midland Regional Hospital, Mullingar€66,873€66,296€64,760
National Maternity Hospital, Holles Street€46,387€46,344€45,338
Our Lady's Hospital, Navan€42,862€41,892€41,361
Royal Victoria Eye & Ear Hospital, Dublin€23,169€24,327€22,424
St Luke's Hospital, Kilkenny€59,857€59,658€58,193
St Michael's Hospital, Dun Laoghaire€24,326€24,303€23,696
St Vincent's University Hospital, Elm Park€215,591€215,589€210,622
St. Columcilles Hospital, Loughlinstown€31,516€31,419€30,602
Wexford General Hospital€57,535€56,837€56,365
South/South West€719,830€725,514€705,160
Bantry General Hospital€16,873€16,972€17,167
Cork University Hospital€268,937€268,842€259,691
Kerry General Hospital€73,999€74,009€72,981
Kilcreen Orthopaedic Hospital€6,395€6,608€6,703
Mallow General Hospital€16,794€17,290€16,209
Mercy University Hospital, Cork€68,462€70,661€66,156
South Infirmary University Hospital, Cork€52,449€53,265€50,728
South Tipperary General Hospital€51,982€51,932€50,962
South/South West Hosp Grp HQ€9,314€11,510€10,875
Waterford Regional Hospital€154,625€154,425€153,687
Saolta€695,742€672,729€654,356
Galway University Hospitals€289,680€281,603€274,231
Letterkenny General Hospital€119,888€113,394€110,506
Mayo General Hospital€87,972€85,679€85,356
Portiuncula Hospital General & Maternity€59,369€56,982€54,562
Roscommon County Hospital€19,086€18,580€17,996
Saolta Hosp Grp HQ€3,503€4,569€2,987
Sligo General Hospital€116,243€111,921€108,718
UL€263,185€262,168€255,062
Croom Hospital€11,915€12,121€11,747
Ennis Hospital€15,616€16,627€16,225
Nenagh Hospital€15,611€15,537€15,297
St John's Hospital€18,397€19,566€16,248
UL Hospital Group HQ€2,303€1,540€2,638
University Hospital Limerick€179,657€177,173€173,956
University Maternity Hospital€19,687€19,605€18,951
National Childrens Hospital€235,978€239,041€230,494
Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children, Crumlin€127,099€129,154€123,881
Tallaght Hospital - AMNCH (Paediatric Only)€16,889€16,889€15,781
Temple Street, CUH€91,981€92,331€89,474
Nat Childrens Hosp Group HQ€9€667€1,359
Regional & National€25,666€39,683€67,235
Grand Total€4,225,640€4,212,782€4,122,815

Hospital Waiting Lists

 606. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the waiting times for cataract surgery by each public hospital. [7160/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar As this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly. If you have not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days please contact my Private Office and my officials will follow the matter up.

Primary Care Centres Provision

 607. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the number of primary health care centres completed and operational; the number still pending; when they will come on stream; the extent to which use of existing primary care centres has been reflected in a reduction in patients seeking treatments at accident and emergency units in hospitals in the immediate catchment area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7191/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar As the information requested by the Deputy relates to service issues and is not routinely provided to my Department, I have asked the Health Service Executive to reply directly to the Deputy on these matters. If you have not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days please contact my Private Office and they will follow up the matter with them.

  Question No. 608 answered with Question No. 431.

Health Services Provision

 609. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the provision he is making for the replacement of the services currently undertaken by Saint John of God Services at Saint Raphael's in County Kildare and at Dunfierth House at Enfield, County Kildare, in the aftermath of indications by the Health Information and Quality Authority of impending closure; if he is making provision for the modernisation of existing provisions or the provision of alternatives, given the likely ongoing needs of children, young adults and parents who have previously been able to rely on such services; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7193/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar 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. If you have not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days please contact my Private Office and they will follow up the matter with them.

Medical Card Eligibility

 610. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick Information on Peter Fitzpatrick Zoom on Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar why a person (details supplied) in County Louth has been refused a discretionary medical card, given a diagnosis of cancer; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7197/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar The Health Service Executive has been asked to examine this matter and to reply to the Deputy as soon as possible.

The Health Service Executive operates the General Medical Services scheme, which includes medical cards and GP visit cards, under the Health Act 1970, as amended. It has established a dedicated contact service for members of the Oireachtas specifically for queries relating to medical cards and GP visit cards, which the Deputy may wish to use for an earlier response. Contact information has recently issued to Oireachtas members.

If the Deputy has not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days, please contact my Private Office who will follow up the matter with them.

Hospital Appointments Status

 611. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the status of an operation for a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7200/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar 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 you directly. If you have not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days please contact my Private Office and my officials will follow the matter up.

Accident and Emergency Departments

 612. Deputy Maureen O'Sullivan Information on Maureen O'Sullivan Zoom on Maureen O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar his views on the Health Service Executive's escalation policy, specifically on the issue of the cancellation of operating lists to accommodate emergency departments despite the fact that these freed-up beds cannot be used for patients on trolleys because the patients on trolleys could present a risk of infections for post-operative patients already on the ward. [7211/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar In November 2015, in conjunction with the HSE Director General, I issued a National Emergency Department Escalation Framework to hospitals, on how best to manage hospital capacity and patient flow through the hospital at times when there is a surge in demand for emergency care.

At times of surge, when there is significant demand for emergency care, the Escalation Framework envisages that hospitals consider cancelling non-urgent elective procedures.

At Levels 1 and 2 of escalation, the cancellation of elective procedures is undertaken at the discretion of the hospital management, in consultation with the relevant consultant. However once level 3 escalation measures are put in place, available elective medical and nursing staff are redeployed to treat admissions through ED wherever possible, with potential knock-on effects on the staffing of elective wards. It is a matter for each hospital to manage its bed capacity, having regard for the needs of patients and appropriate infection control measures.

As this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly. If you have not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days please contact my Private Office and my officials will follow the matter up.

Ambulance Service Provision

 613. Deputy Hildegarde Naughton Information on Hildegarde Naughton Zoom on Hildegarde Naughton asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar his plans to provide an adequate local ambulance service for Connemara, County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7223/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar As this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly. If you have not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days please contact my Private Office and my officials will follow the matter up.

Hospital Waiting Lists

 614. Deputy Hildegarde Naughton Information on Hildegarde Naughton Zoom on Hildegarde Naughton asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the reason for delays in surgery for a person (details supplied) in County Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7225/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar Long waiting times for scoliosis services are unacceptable and I have been clear in my determination that these waiting times are reduced, through additional resources and capacity.

Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin is the largest provider of scoliosis surgery for children and young people. Funding was allocated in 2015 for additional consultant posts including two consultant orthopaedic surgeons, anaesthetist and support staff at Crumlin. Capital funding was also provided for a new theatre on site to expand theatre capacity further. The 2016 Service Plan specifically provides for support for the new theatre capacity and the continued development of paediatric scoliosis services to address ongoing capacity deficits.

In order to address waiting times in the interim, patients from Crumlin have been transferred to other hospitals where capacity is available and where that is clinically appropriate. These include Temple Street, Cappagh, Tallaght and the Blackrock Clinic. External capacity has also been identified at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital at Stanmore in the UK. The Department of Health is continuing to work with the HSE, the Children’s Hospital Group and the hospitals themselves to ensure that we continue to make strong progress in addressing this issue and to identify all options to further improve access times.

As the specific issues raised are a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly. If you have not received a reply from the HSE within 15 working days please contact my Private Office and my officials will follow the matter up.

  Question No. 615 answered with Question No. 588.

Health Services Funding

 616. Deputy Jim Daly Information on Jim Daly Zoom on Jim Daly asked the Minister for Health Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar the grants available to voluntary organisations for acquiring new equipment in his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7242/16]

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): Information on Leo Varadkar Zoom on Leo Varadkar My Department administers a National Lottery Discretionary Fund from which once-off grants are paid to community and voluntary organisations providing a range of health related services. If an organisation wishes to make an application for National Lottery Funding in 2016 it should submit a formal application. Detailed procedures along with the application form for 2016 are now available on my Department's website at http://health.gov.ie/about-us/national-lottery-grant-scheme/.

  The closing date for receipt of application forms is 6 May 2016.

Military Aircraft

 617. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Information on Charles Flanagan Zoom on Charles Flanagan if any military drones belonging to the US operated via any location here; if permits for such activity have been sought or issued; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6419/16]

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): Information on Charles Flanagan Zoom on Charles Flanagan In accordance with the Air Navigation (Foreign Military Aircraft) Order of 1952, foreign military aircraft may not fly over or land in the State unless permission has been granted by my Department. The US Embassy has not requested permission from my Department for a landing by a military unmanned aircraft in the State nor has it notified my Department about any such unmanned aircraft overflying the State. The Embassy has confirmed that there have been no landings in the State or overflights of the State by US military unmanned aircraft.

Ministerial Meetings

 618. Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Information on Charles Flanagan Zoom on Charles Flanagan his plans to meet the Secretary General of NATO, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6325/16]

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): Information on Charles Flanagan Zoom on Charles Flanagan I have no plans to meet with the Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg.


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