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Written Answers. - Social Welfare Benefits.

Tuesday, 3 December 2002

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 558 No. 4

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 444. Mr. Ring Information on Michael Ring Zoom on Michael Ring  asked the Minister for Social and Family Affairs Information on Mary Coughlan Zoom on Mary Coughlan  if a person (details supplied) in County Mayo will get a refund on their dental costs from her Department in view of the fact that this person has sufficient stamps to qualify for dental treatment benefit. [24559/02]

Minister for Social and Family Affairs (Mary Coughlan): Information on Mary Coughlan Zoom on Mary Coughlan There is no record of a claim of dental benefit in this case. To benefit under the dental benefit scheme, patients must obtain treatment from a dentist who is operating the treatment benefit scheme. Under this scheme, the Department pays the dentist on the basis set out in the contract for dental treatment and the patient pays the difference, if any, which the contract allows.

Some dentists, however, are imposing charges in breach of their contracts with my Department. [1178] Insured workers seeking treatment under the dental benefit scheme have been advised to check that their dentist is adhering to the agreed fees and, if not, to contact the Department for an alternative. The notices have also advised that patients who undertake treatment as private patients are doing so outside the terms of the dental benefit scheme and the Department will not be able to refund any costs arising.

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