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Written Answers. - Hospital Services.

Tuesday, 26 November 2002

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 558 No. 1

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 371. Mr. Ring Information on Michael Ring Zoom on Michael Ring  asked the Minister for Health and Children Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin  the reason people who use the MRI scan in Galway still have to pay for it when in other parts of the country they do not; and the reason the people of the west are being discriminated against. [23651/02]

Minister for Health and Children (Mr. Martin): Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin My Department has authorised the following hospitals to charge referring agencies and private patients for MRI scans: Beaumont; Cappagh National Orthopaedic Hospital; Mater Misericordiae Hospital; Temple Street Children's Hospital; St. James's Hospital; UCHG; the Adelaide and Meath Hospital, Dublin, incorporating the National Children's Hospital at Tallaght; Waterford Regional Hospital; Mid-Western Regional Hospital, Dooradoyle, Limerick.

Public patients remain entitled to public hospital services, including MRI scans, subject only to the statutory charges where applicable. The interagency charge in respect of MRI services is a non-statutory charge and cannot in any circumstances be passed on to the public patient. The above hospitals will charge the referring agency the appropriate rate for the MRI. Charges have been approved for MRI services to be payable by the following: private out-patients, under the Health Services (Out-Patient) Regulations, 1993; private in-patients, under section 55 of the Health Act, 1970, as amended by section 6 of the Health (Amendment) Act, 1991.

The maximum charge for the MRI should not exceed €400. If the above hospitals wish to increase the rate, they are required to seek prior approval from me.

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