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Written Answers - Health Service Allowances

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 752 No. 2

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 284.  Deputy Dara Calleary Information on Dara Calleary Zoom on Dara Calleary  asked the Minister for Health Information on James Reilly Zoom on James Reilly  the reason behind the decision to cut the disabled sheltered attendance allowance by €20 per week with effect from 13 January 2012. [3139/12]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Kathleen Lynch): Information on Kathleen Lynch Zoom on Kathleen Lynch The decision to reduce the top up payment made to people with a disability attending rehabilitative training was implemented by the Health Service Executive (HSE) without informing the Department of Health. The reduction from €31.80 per week to €20 per week, from the 1 January 2012, was communicated to the HSE Local Managers in advance of the Minister approving the National Service Plan for 2012. is not acceptable to me.

I acknowledge that this proposed measure sought to bring consistency to the top up bonus paid to people attending the HSE rehabilitative training scheme with similar payments paid in other State training schemes.

[399]Any reduction in payments to individuals requires adequate advance notice to enable the recipients and indeed, service providers, to take the reduction into account in planning their support needs and other arrangements.

It should also be noted that people with a disability attending Rehabilitative Training are usually in receipt of a State payment such as the Disability Allowance.

Accordingly, the HSE has agreed to my request to review its decision.

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