Wednesday, 24 June 1936
Dáil Éireann Debate
Tadhg O Murchadha: asked the Minister for Local Government and Public Health whether he is aware that owing to the neglect of the Unified Society some thousands of stamped health insurance cards surrendered to the society by insured members were mislaid and subsequently destroyed; whether he has taken any and if so what action to establish the ownership of the destroyed cards with a view to having the proper number of contributions credited to the insured persons affected; whether he proposes taking any steps to ensure that pending the final adjustment arising out of the loss of the stamped cards insured persons whose cards were destroyed will not be deprived of benefit to which otherwise they are entitled and whether he will indicate the steps which he proposes taking to obviate a recurrence of the incident in question.
Minister for Local Government and Public Health (Mr. O Ceallaigh): I am informed by the society that a parcel of cards for the first half of 1934 has been temporarily mislaid, but that there is no reason to assume they have been destroyed.
The contributions on these cards have already been credited to the insured persons concerned and, therefore, no question arises of any insured person losing benefit by reason of the fact that the cards have been mislaid.
Mr. Murphy: Is the Minister aware that 1,500 health insurance cards, the property of insured persons who were also members of the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union, are believed to have been given to a contractor  for waste paper? Is he further aware that when the contractor was communicated with on the following day by the society, he stated that the material he received was all destroyed? Is he further aware that a large number of applications for benefit are now being queried on the ground that cards do not appear to have been received, and will he indicate what steps have been taken to ascertain the names of the insured persons whose cards were lost and what arrangements have been made to protect their interests?
Mr. O Ceallaigh: I am not aware of the facts that the Deputy has mentioned, if they are facts, but I am told that some cards were temporarily mislaid and that the contributions on the cards have been credited to the insured persons and they are not likely to lose anything thereby.
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