Wednesday, 3 May 1967
Dáil Eireann Debate
Mr. Kyne: asked the Minister for Health whether he will consider setting up a special tribunal to investigate the pensions payable to voluntary hospital nurses and jubilee nurses and to make recommendations as to how, and by what amount, they should be increased.
Minister for Health (Mr. S. Flanagan): Pensions payable to voluntary hospital nurses and Jubilee nurses are, in the first instance, the responsibility of the employing body. The funds under my control are involved only to the extent to which grants are paid towards the revenue expenses of those bodies.
In 1954, the Hospitals Commission notified voluntary hospitals as to the extent to which costs incurred by them on pension schemes would rank towards recoupment of their revenue deficits. A number of hospitals did not make arrangements for the provision of superannuation benefits for their nurses and, in order to meet that situation, it was agreed in 1963 that, in so far as recoupment of revenue deficits is concerned, benefits based on one-half of actual service might be paid. It is my intention to apply to  persons in receipt of benefits under this arrangement any increases in superannuation which will be approved for the public services.
As I have already announced, I have accepted in principle the introduction of a superannuation scheme applicable to voluntary hospitals and voluntary nursing association staffs which will provide benefits similar to those available to the staffs of local authorities  and will permit staffs to transfer between the bodies concerned and the local authority service without loss of superannuation benefits. The final drafting of this scheme is nearing completion.
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