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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 324-343
 Header Item Departmental Staff Data
 Header Item Health Services
 Header Item Cancer Screening Programmes
 Header Item Patient Safety
 Header Item Mental Health Services
 Header Item Brexit Issues
 Header Item Drug and Alcohol Task Forces
 Header Item Hospital Appointments Status
 Header Item National Treatment Purchase Fund Waiting Times
 Header Item Autism Support Services
 Header Item Hospital Waiting Lists
 Header Item Hospital Appointments Status
 Header Item Hospital Waiting Lists Data
 Header Item Hospitals Discharges
 Header Item HSE Reports
 Header Item Hospital Appointments Status
 Header Item Healthcare Infrastructure Provision
 Header Item Hospital Waiting Lists Data

Tuesday, 26 February 2019

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 980 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 82 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 324-343

Departmental Staff Data

 324. Deputy Joan Burton Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of staff in his Department that attended a summit (details supplied) in Dublin in 2017 and 2018, respectively; the cost to his Department or agency under the remit of his Department; if his Department or an agency under the remit of his Department undertook advertising or sponsorship in respect of the summit; the cost in this regard; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9205/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The information requested by the Deputy is not routinely available. My Department's Learning and Development unit has advised that it has no record of any staff attending the conference in question. Should I learn otherwise I will revert to the Deputy.

Information regarding agencies under the aegis of the Department are operational matters for the relevant CEO/Director/Chairperson and the Deputy may wish to contact them directly. I have forwarded the question to the HSE for direct reply.

Health Services

 325. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if HSE policy states that information regarding the fact that the use of morcellators during fibroid surgery may spread cancer and decrease long-term survival of patients due to the fact uterine tissue may contain unsuspected cancer, must be shared by the consulting doctor with patients when considering surgery with the use of these devices. [9215/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The Deputy's question refers to service delivery matters and accordingly I have asked the HSE to respond directly to her.

Cancer Screening Programmes

 326. Deputy Brendan Griffin Information on Brendan Griffin Zoom on Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris his views on a matter in relation to the waiting time for test results for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9218/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris In May 2018, I asked CervicalCheck to make the necessary arrangements to provide that any woman who had a CervicalCheck smear test, and whose GP considered that she should have a further test as part of her reassurance, could access such a further test without charge. This decision was made in good faith to address the considerable fears of the many anxious women in Ireland, following issues which had emerged in relation to the CervicalCheck screening programme.

In the months since then, there has been a significant increase in the volume of women presenting for smear tests. This includes women who have availed of the out of cycle tests, but also a greater number of women presenting for scheduled screening. This increased level of engagement with the programme is welcome. However, the increased demand has undoubtedly put pressure on lab capacity and turnaround times.

The HSE has been working actively with the labs to manage this issue and to improve turnaround times for smear tests. In addition, the HSE is aiming to source additional screening capacity, which would improve the turnaround time of results. However, sourcing capacity and resources is a global challenge as countries start to move to primary HPV screening, which vastly reduces the requirement for cytology screening staff. The HSE is currently developing a capacity plan, which will take account of available capacity and expected demand, with the aim of bringing the programme into stabilisation this year. This is a priority concern for my Department and the HSE.

The HSE advises that the CervicalCheck Programme has recently agreed with laboratories to prioritise those slides which originate from women who attended colposcopy, as this cohort of women are considered to have the most serious need.

The HSE also advises that the natural history of cervical cancer would indicate that the disease would normally develop over a period of 10 to 15 years. Due to this very fact, it is important that any woman of screening age attends for cervical screening each and every time she is invited to participate. The HSE has advised that in this context, a delay in the return of cervical screening results, whilst undesirable, is not necessarily dangerous and poses a very low risk to women.

Patient Safety

 327. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if he will address a matter in relation to patient safety (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9228/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris There are no legally binding regulations governing the physical size of tablets/capsules for human consumption to reduce the risk of choking. Companies who market medicines would be expected to consider the suitability of tablet and capsule sizes, taking into account the intended patient population and relevant guidelines such as the European guideline on pharmaceutical development of medicines for paediatric use. However these guidelines are not legally binding and do not specify maximum tablet or capsule sizes.

Mental Health Services

 328. Deputy Pat Buckley Information on Pat Buckley Zoom on Pat Buckley asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the amount collected by the HSE from public patients who were involuntarily detained under the Mental Health Act 2001 since 2015; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [9235/19]

 329. Deputy Pat Buckley Information on Pat Buckley Zoom on Pat Buckley asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if the parents and-or guardians of children involuntarily detained under the Mental Health Act 2001 are subject to inpatient fees; if so, the amount per year that is collected from this cohort; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9236/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Jim Daly): Information on Jim Daly Zoom on Jim Daly I propose to take Questions Nos. 328 and 329 together.

  As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Question No. 330 answered with Question No. 309.

Brexit Issues

 331. Deputy David Cullinane Information on David Cullinane Zoom on David Cullinane asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if Irish citizens in Northern Ireland will be able to apply for a European health insurance card through the HSE post-Brexit; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9243/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The Regulation that gives eligibility for a European Health Insurance Cards (EHIC) is EU Regulation 883/2004. Under the regulations, an individual applies for an EHIC in their competent Member State. A person's competent Member State is the State where a person works, makes a social insurance contribution or receives a contributory pension. Therefore, for any person living in Northern Ireland, an EHIC will be issued by the HSE where this State is determined to be the competent Member State for that individual.

Drug and Alcohol Task Forces

 332. Deputy Brendan Howlin Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the additional funding that will be made available to drug task forces and community drugs projects in 2019, by project; if an emerging needs fund will be established; the additional funding available in 2019 for same; the additional funding made available to implement the national drugs strategy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9249/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Catherine Byrne): Information on Catherine Byrne Zoom on Catherine Byrne The Department of Health allocated funding of almost €100 million to the HSE for addiction services in 2019. The HSE National Service Plan 2019 sets out the type and volume of addiction services to be provided, having regard to the funding allocated.

  In addition, the Department provides a further €28 million to Drug and Alcohol Task Forces through various channels of funding, including the HSE.

  Implementing the health-led national drugs strategy continues to be a Government priority. Task forces have an important role in delivering the strategy at the local level.

  Within the limited envelope of resources available for drug and alcohol services in 2019, I am considering options for the provision of additional funding for addiction services and task forces.

  I am committed to providing additional resources to enhance service provision under the national drugs strategy. These resources should be directed towards those interventions which are most likely to lead to a reduction in problem substance use and positive improvement in public health, safety and wellbeing.

  I will shortly be engaging with the task forces to outline my plans for additional funding for community initiatives to tackle the misuse of drugs and alcohol.

Hospital Appointments Status

 333. Deputy Barry Cowen Information on Barry Cowen Zoom on Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the status of the case of a person (details supplied); and when they can expect a hospital appointment. [9256/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris 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, since 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 the Deputy directly.

National Treatment Purchase Fund Waiting Times

 334. Deputy Seán Haughey Information on Seán Haughey Zoom on Seán Haughey asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when a person (details supplied) will have surgery; if the procedure will be carried out under the National Treatment Purchase Fund or the EU cross-border directive; if a date will be provided for the surgery; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9275/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris 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, since 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.

  The HSE operates the Cross Border Directive (CBD) in Ireland. Under the terms of the Directive, patients of an EU/EEA Member State who meet the necessary criteria may opt to avail of healthcare provided under the legislation of their Member State of affiliation in another EU/EEA Member State and be reimbursed the lesser of the cost of receiving the treatment abroad, or the cost in their own Member State The HSE provides information for patients on the CBD on its website which can be accessed at http://www.hse.ie/eng/services/list/1/schemes and also by phone at 056 7784551.

  In relation to the particular queries raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Autism Support Services

 335. Deputy Seamus Healy Information on Seamus Healy Zoom on Seamus Healy asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris if funding for the provision of specialised autism specific respite services in Cahir, County Tipperary, will be approved; if the case of persons (details supplied) will be addressed; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9298/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

The Programme for Partnership Government states that the Government wishes to provide more accessible respite care to facilitate full support for people with a disability.

As the Deputy's question relates to individual cases, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

Hospital Waiting Lists

 336. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when a person (details supplied) will receive a hip operation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9309/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris 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, since 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 the Deputy directly.

Hospital Appointments Status

 337. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when a person (details supplied) will be given an appointment in hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9310/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris 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, since 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 the Deputy directly.

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

 338. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the number of persons on the waiting list to see each consultant neurologist at Beaumont Hospital; the average waiting time to see each consultant; the steps being taken to reduce the waiting times; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9320/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to reply to you directly.

Hospitals Discharges

 339. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the staffing and configuration deficits in each of the early supported discharge teams; the additional funding needed to address same; the number of persons across each operating site that have been discharged home via early supported discharge for stroke patients since the first ESD roll-out in 2011; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [9321/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As this is a service matter, it has been referred to the Health Service Executive for attention and direct reply to the Deputy.

HSE Reports

 340. Deputy Sean Sherlock Information on Seán Sherlock Zoom on Seán Sherlock asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris further to Parliamentary Question No. 397 of 5 February 2019, the costs associated with the publication in tabular form. [9323/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond to you directly as soon as possible

Hospital Appointments Status

 341. Deputy Martin Ferris Information on Martin Ferris Zoom on Martin Ferris asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris when a person (details supplied) will receive an appointment in relation to a hip replacement. [9326/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris 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, since 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 the Deputy directly.

Healthcare Infrastructure Provision

 342. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin Information on Fiona O'Loughlin Zoom on Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the costing and funding spent on a project (details supplied) in its first design stage before it stopped. [9329/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris As the Health Service Executive is responsible for the delivery of healthcare infrastructure projects, I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly in relation to this matter.

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

 343. Deputy John Brassil Information on John Brassil Zoom on John Brassil asked the Minister for Health Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris the average wait time for patients referred to Cork University Hospital for ophthalmology assessment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9337/19]

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris The information requested is currently being collated by officials in my Department and will be sent directly to the Deputy as soon as it becomes available.


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