Martin, Micheál

Tuesday, 15 October 2002

Dáil Eireann Debate
Vol. 555 No. 2

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Priority Questions. - Hospital Accommodation.

Was asked: the number of the additional 709 public beds promised for 2002 which have been provided; the number which will be in place by the end of 2002; the number of public beds available in July 2001; the num...More Button

The health strategy, Quality and Fairness – A Health System for You, outlines a programme of investment and reform of the health services up to 2011. As part of the preparatory work for the strategy, ...More Button

It was always understood in terms of commissioning additional beds this year that the bulk of them would come into commission at the latter end of the year because of the obvious logistics involved in...More Button

Priority Questions. - Health Board Allowances.

Was asked: if and when he authorised his Department's circular to health boards sent on 26 July 2002 instructing that monthly payments to parents of children with disabilities should not in future be backdated t...More Button

Domiciliary care allowance was introduced in 1973 by way of circular 24/73 and is payable under section 61 of the Health Act, 1970. Following a request by my Department, a national health board workin...More Button

Perhaps I can proceed by way of a supplementary question.More Button

In light of this, my Department, while committing to examine the issue further, rescinded the circular of 1 July, replacing it on 26 July with the following wording: “Where a child qualifies for DCA, ...More Button

The policy position is contained in the circular issued on 1 July on the DCA, which states that the allowance may be paid in respect of eligible children. That is covered in the reply. That circular i...More Button

Priority Questions. - Health Board Staff.

Was asked: the number of vacancies which will be left in each health board area as a result of his instruction to cut 800 posts; if he received a letter from the chief executive officers of the health boards war...More Button

The Deputy may wish to note that since 1997 there has been an increase of almost 27,000 in the approved employment ceiling for the public health services in whole-time equivalent terms, bringing the a...More Button

I disagree strongly with the Deputy. I do not know whether she listened to the reply.More Button

I expected a reply of that type from the chief executive officers. To be fair to the health boards, the chief executive officers would respond in such a manner. When I examined the Department's census...More Button

I understand from a note that the bottom line in terms of the Western Health Board is that it accepts the indicative figure of 85 posts, which my official advised at that time and which was the subjec...More Button

Priority Questions. - Orthodontic Service.

Was asked: how many of the 31 recommendations of the Joint Committee on Health and Children report on the orthodontic service in Ireland which have been implemented; the recommendations implemented; his views on...More Button

The delivery of orthodontic services is a matter for the chief executive officers of the health boards in the first instance. I understand that the chief executive officers have established a review g...More Button

The committee quite rightly said that the co-operation of all regional orthodontists was important and essential to the proper roll-out of the programme. As I said to the consultants concerned, I cann...More Button

That depends on who one listens to. I have heard these claims and they are very negative.More Button

It has been going on for ten years. I have spoken to the chief dental officer and suggested a mediation process to resolve this. The row is not just between consultants and the boards, it is also betw...More Button

It is the responsibility of those involved in these rows to put the children and parents first.More Button

Priority Questions. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: the discussions he has had in relation to the crisis in Monaghan General Hospital since Dáil Éireann last met.More Button

The provision of services at Monaghan General Hospital is a matter for the North-Eastern Health Board. As the Deputy is aware, I visited Monaghan General Hospital earlier this year and engaged in exte...More Button

Eight months?More Button

I thought the Deputy was referring to the period since the general election. The time for flag-waving and holding meetings with various delegations is over. It is time we moved to find a solution to t...More Button

The executive of the North-Eastern Health Board has made it clear to me on numerous occasions that it is doing everything possible to try to resolve this matter in the context of meeting the requireme...More Button

Deputy Ó Caoláin knows that is not the statutory position. Leaving that aside, however, when I visited Monaghan, I was asked to do certain things. I sanctioned many of these, some of which have to be ...More Button

The second point—More Button

With respect, I wish to make an important point. There was a proposal on the table in September and a great deal of behind the scenes work went on between the colleges, the North-Eastern Health Board ...More Button

We are taking it in hand.More Button

Other Questions. - Dublin Teaching Hospitals.

Was asked: the steps being taken to deal with the acute budgetary problems facing the major Dublin teaching hospitals; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Eastern Regional Health Authority is in discussions with the major Dublin teaching hospitals in regard to outstanding issues in the context of the service agreements between the authority and the ...More Button

The Dublin teaching hospitals received an average and significant increase in allocation over the base funding in 2002 of 17.1%. I acknowledge that total activity has risen significantly and that the ...More Button

There are issues which require further review in terms of the length of time it takes—More Button

The level of reported over-runs in expenditure across the health sector this year is less in percentage terms than the figure for the same time last year. There is much working out to be done yet. The...More Button

At the commencement of 2002, even though it was an election year, we told the boards to provide for higher contingency funding to deal with difficulties. We thought from the outset that this year was ...More Button

I am not going to interfere with that process; the process will have to work itself through.More Button

Other Questions. - Professional Indemnity Cover.

Was asked: the difference between his reply to a parliamentary question of March 2002 regarding the transfer of funds to the Medical Protection Society and the information obtained under the Freedom of Informati...More Button

Was asked: if he will reconcile his reply to a parliamentary question of March 2002 that there was "no transfer of funds directly or indirectly" to the Medical Protection Society with the information obtained un...More Button

Was asked: if he will reconcile his reply to a parliamentary question of March 2002 that there was "no transfer of funds directly or indirectly" to the Medical Protection Society with the information obtained un...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 85, 266 and 273 together. The agreement which was entered into between my Department and the Medical Protection Society in May 2001 was intended to ensure that consult...More Button

My advice is strongly to the contrary on the points advanced by Deputy Mitchell. There was a real danger of a crisis being precipitated in this area as a result of the decision of the Medical Defence ...More Button

We employed our own external consultants on this. They went to London to try to assess what the historic liabilities would be. They are considerable.More Button

We will strongly and robustly defend the position as outlined.More Button

In respect of this question my advice is that we—More Button

Legal advice has been taken on this.More Button

The officials at the time would have taken advice but I will check that for the Deputy. I do not have exact details of what the advice was at the time. People can make claims to the European Union but...More Button

That in itself does not mean that the claims will win through, of course. We will contest that, obviously.More Button

The State has taken the private obstetricians on board to maintain the provision of private obstetric services. We made that decision some time ago to maintain capacity. We see enterprise liability as...More Button

Yes.More Button

Other Questions. - National Hospitals Agency.

Was asked: when the national hospitals agency will be set up; the way in which it is envisaged that the agency should interface with the role currently played by Comhairle na Ospidéal; and if he will make a stat...More Button

Was asked: when the national hospitals agency will be set up; the way in which it is envisaged that the agency will interface with the role currently played by Comhairle na nOspidéal; and if he will make a state...More Button

Was asked: when the national hospitals agency will be set up; the way in which it is envisaged that the agency will interface with the role currently played by Comhairle na nOspidéal; and if he will make a state...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 86, 264 and 275 together. My Department is currently examining all issues relevant to the establishment of a national hospitals agency, including the implications for ...More Button

Both reform strands of the overall strategy are going ahead at full speed. A consultancy was awarded in July to Prospectus, a company that is currently undertaking the audit of structures and function...More Button

The two groups that are due to report are not industrial relations fora. It would, therefore, be most injurious to both processes if they were to become embroiled in the area of industrial relations. ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: the total number on hospital waiting lists at the latest date for which figures are available; the comparable figure for the same date in the previous year; and if he will make a statement on the matt...More Button

The total number of people on public hospital waiting lists at 31 March 2002, the latest date for which figures have been published, was 25,105. The comparable figure for 31 March 2001 was 26,382. Thi...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Charges.

Was asked: the estimated additional revenue which will be raised from his decision announced on 12 July 2002 to increase hospital charges and the threshold for the drugs refund scheme; if his attention has been ...More Button

The estimated additional revenue that will be raised from the increases in hospital charges and the threshold for the drugs refund scheme is as follows: drugs payment scheme –€7 million via an increas...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Alcohol Awareness.

Was asked: the action which is proposed, as part of the campaign to reduce alcoholism, to control or reduce the exorbitant price of soft drinks in public houses; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the action proposed as part of the campaign to reduce alcoholism, to control or reduce the exorbitant price of soft drinks in public houses; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the action proposed as part of the campaign to reduce alcoholism, to control or reduce the exorbitant price of soft drinks in public houses; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 89, 269 and 270 together. As the Deputy will be aware, the Office of Consumer Affairs has responsibility for the control of pricing in relation to consumer products. H...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Services for People with Disabilities.

Was asked: when he will enact the Disability Commissioner Bill.More Button

The Disability Commissioner Bill was initiated as a Private Members' Bill in the Seanad on 3 August 2001. The main provisions of the Bill related to the provision of health and social services for peo...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Orthodontic Service.

Was asked: the number of children awaiting orthodontic treatment in the Eastern Regional Health Authority area as at 1 October 2002; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I am pleased to advise the Deputy that I have taken a number of measures to improve orthodontic services in the Eastern Regional Health Authority. The grade of specialist in orthodontics has been crea...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Accommodation.

Was asked: if, further to Parliamentary Question No. 153 of 6 February 2002 and Parliamentary Question No. 227 of 27 June 2002, he has ascertained the number of young chronic sick persons awaiting beds in each h...More Button

My Department is still awaiting the detailed information sought by the Deputy and I will convey it under separate cover to the Deputy as soon as it is available. My Department is acutely aware that th...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Staffing.

Was asked: the extent to which he plans to ensure adequate availability of the necessary qualified medical, surgical and other staff in all hospitals throughout the country; if he has satisfied himself that adeq...More Button

I have initiated a number of measures to estimate the number of doctors and nurses required by our hospital service over the next decade and beyond. In relation to the numbers of hospital doctors the ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Nursing Staff.

Was asked: the steps he plans to take to deal with the acute shortage of nurses, having regard to the findings of the steering group on nursing and midwifery, that the number of vacancies had decreased by just 4...More Button

The recruitment and retention of nurses in the public health service is a matter of priority for my Department. Over the past four years, a number of highly significant steps have been taken to ensure...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Autism Services.

Was asked: if funding will be provided for the specialised diets and treatments required for autism sufferers tested positive for the measles virus; if research is proposed into the biomedical aspects of autism;...More Button

Extensive research has and continues to be conducted world-wide in relation to the MMR vaccine. The World Health Organisation has indicated that MMR vaccine does not cause autism and that there has be...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Health Insurance.

Was asked: the reason he sanctioned the increase in VHI rates, having regard to the hardship that this will cause for many subscribers; when he now plans to use the powers available to him to introduce risk equa...More Button

The position is that the setting of premium charges is the responsibility of the VHI Board. The legislation requires the board to set premiums at a level sufficient to cover costs and make allowance f...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Professional Indemnity Cover.

Was asked: his views on whether it is reasonable that, with the introduction of enterprise liability as now proposed, private practitioner consultants should pay for historic claims from future insurance subscri...More Button

Was asked: his views on whether it is reasonable that in the introduction of enterprise liability as now proposed, private practitioner consultants should pay for historic claims from future insurance subscripti...More Button

Was asked: his views on whether it is reasonable that, with the introduction of enterprise liability as now proposed, private practitioner consultants should pay for historic claims from future insurance subscri...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 97, 267 and 272 together. The issue of historic liabilities of the mutual defence bodies is one that remains to be resolved. The MDU and the MPS have historically offe...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: if he will make a statement on plans for the future of Hume St. Hospital, Dublin.More Button

Was asked: the plans in place for the future of the Hume Street skin and cancer hospital which is due to lose two further consultants shortly; if it is to be relocated; the provision being made for the replaceme...More Button

Was asked: his plans for the future of the Hume Street Skin and Cancer Hospital which is due to lose two further consultants shortly; if it is to be relocated; the provision being made for the replacement of the...More Button

Was asked: his plans for the future of Hume Street skin and cancer hospital which is due to lose two further consultants shortly; if it is to be relocated; the provision being made for the replacement of the los...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 98, 105, 265 and 274 together. Services at the City of Dublin Skin and Cancer Hospital are provided under an arrangement with the Eastern Regional Health Authority, ER...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Doctors.

Was asked: the steps he is taking to seek a resolution of the dispute involving junior hospital doctors over the decision by hospitals to introduce a new roster which the doctors believe will affect their medica...More Button

Non-consultant hospital doctors currently work an average of 77 hours per week. The EU Working Time Directive requires that this be reduced to 58 hours per week by August 2004, with maximum average of...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Compensation Schemes.

Was asked: the progress which has been made by the working group on the development of a no-fault compensation system for birth-damaged children; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The advisory group examining the feasibility of introducing a no fault compensation scheme for brain damaged infants has met regularly since its establishment in July 2001. The group has conducted an ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - National Health Strategy.

Was asked: the progress made to date with regard to the implementation of the commitments given in the national health strategy; the commitments which were to have been implemented by 1 April 2002; the status of...More Button

Was asked: the funding arrangements which have been put in place to ensure that all the provisions of the national health strategy can be implemented over the next ten years; and if he will make a statement on t...More Button

Was asked: the aspects of the ten year plan which have to date been achieved; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 101, 135 and 349 together. In recent years health has been by far the biggest beneficiary of new resources available for public services. Over the last four years fund...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Audit of Health System.

Was asked: if the contract for the audit of the functions and structures of the health system has been awarded; when their report is due; the purpose of the audit; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: when the audit of functions and structures of the health service will be completed; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if the contract for the audit of the functions and structures of the health system has been awarded; when their report is due; the purpose of the audit; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if the contract for the audit of the functions and structures of the health system has been awarded; when their report is due; the purpose of the audit; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 102, 255, 263 and 276 together. My Department awarded the contract to perform an audit of the structures and functions in the health system to Prospectus Strategy Cons...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Suicide Incidence.

Was asked: his views on the number of young people who have taken their own lives in the north inner city of Dublin to date in 2002; his further views on this crisis; and if he will make a statement on the matte...More Button

The most recent information released by the Central Statistics Office states that 67 deaths from suicide were registered during the first quarter of this year. Some 15 of these registered suicides rel...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - National Client Eligibility Index.

Was asked: the reason the pilot national client eligibility index was suspended; when this vital planning and implementation tool will be available nationwide; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The national client eligibility index being implemented by the GMS Payments Board aims to provide a central database of all persons eligible for health services, without duplication. The implementatio...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Organ Retention.

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to concerns expressed by the Parents for Justice group, concerning aspects of the Dunne inquiry into organ retention; the steps which are being taken to address the par...More Button

I am aware that Parents for Justice has expressed concern about certain aspects of the post mortem inquiry. I intend to meet with representatives of the group shortly to hear their concerns at first h...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Services for People with Disabilities.

Was asked: if a place can be secured for a person (details supplied) in Dublin 5 before September 2002.More Button

Responsibility for the provision of services to persons with an intellectual disability and those with autism in the Dublin region rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Health Insurance.

Was asked: if he has received a request from the board of the VHI for part privatisation of the company; the response he has made; the Government's plans for the future of VHI; and if he will make a statement on...More Button

The White Paper on Private Health Insurance, published in 1999 set out the Government's proposals regarding the corporate status of the Voluntary Health Insurance Board. The White Paper provided for t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Departmental Expenditure.

Was asked: the way in which the spending incurred by his Department to date in 2002 compares with the amounts allocated in the Book of Estimates; if his Department will come in on target, in regard to expenditur...More Button

Was asked: the adjustments which he plans to introduce in the last quarter of 2002 in order to bring the overall spending for the year in line with the moneys provided in the Estimates.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 109 and 353 together. The most recent expenditure information, including the General Medical Services, is for end August. Overall the total excess over budget is €173 ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Cardiac Services.

Was asked: his views on the lack of cardiology services in County Kerry, as Kerry and Cork have above the national average for cardiac related illnesses, for both men and women; and if he will make a statement o...More Button

The provision of health services in County Kerry is a matter for the Southern Health Board in the first instance. The cardiovascular health strategy, Building Healthier Hearts, which was launched in J...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Accommodation.

Was asked: when the long promised and urgently required refurbishment of the Central Mental Hospital will take place; if his attention has been drawn to the Dickensian and inhuman conditions for both patients an...More Button

I am aware that conditions for both patients and staff at the Central Mental Hospital are unsatisfactory at present. Since 1999, over €500,000 has been spent on refurbishment of the old Victorian buil...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Polasaí Dátheangachais.

Was asked: an gcuirfidh sé ar bun polasaí dátheangachais don Roinn agus do na boird sláinte sa tslí is gur féidir le gach duine an Béarla agus an Ghaeilge a léamh taobh le taobh in ionad an pobal a dheighilt ina...More Button

Mar atá a fhios ag an Teachta, tá sé leagtha amach i gClár an Rialtais, Bille na dTeangacha Oifigiúla (Comhionannas), 2002, atá mar chúram ar mo chomhleacaí, an Teachta. Éamon Ó Cuív, Aire Gnóthaí Pob...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Primary Care Task Force.

Was asked: if he has received the report of the Primary Care Task Force; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Primary Care Task Force was established in April 2002 to drive forward the implementation of the primary care strategy, Primary Care: A New Direction, in accordance with the 20-point implementatio...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Home Help Service.

Was asked: the basis for excluding relatives of the elderly and the disabled from the home help allowance; and the definition of a relative in relation to such exclusion.More Button

The home help scheme was introduced in 1972 under a provision of the 1970 Health Act. At that time, the chief executive officers of the health boards took a collective decision not to engage family me...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Medical Cards.

Was asked: the number of people over 70 years of age who have availed of the free medical card; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the number of persons holding medical cards, other than persons over 70, at the latest date for which figures are available; the proportion of the population this represents; the similar figures in te...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 115 and 116 together. I am advised by the GMS (Payments) Board that at the end of July 2002 the latest date for which information is available, 77,509 persons aged 70 ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: the progress made to date in the investigation into allegations that women at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda, were unnecessarily subjected to caesarean hysterectomies; if he has satisfied hims...More Button

The matter raised by the Deputy has been referred to the Medical Council in the context of its statutory functions as set out in the Medical Practitioners Act, 1978. The council's deliberations are co...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Winter Vomiting Virus.

Was asked: the number of bed days lost to date in 2002 as a result of the winter vomiting virus; the steps being taken to control the virus; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The information requested by the Deputy is not readily available to my Department. My Department has therefore asked the chief executive officers of the health boards and the regional chief executive ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: in regard to the commitment given on 6 May 2002, the progress which has been made towards eliminating hospital waiting lists within two years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The health strategy sets out the target that by the end of 2004, all public patients requiring admission to hospital will be scheduled to commence treatment within a maximum of three months of referra...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Orthodontic Service.

Was asked: his plans to address the increasingly serious problem of lack of services and facilities in respect of orthodontic treatment; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the reason rigorous assessments have been carried out in an apparent attempt to eliminate patients from orthodontic waiting lists and where it is quite clear that second opinions from private orthodon...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 120 and 350 together. The provision of orthodontic treatment to eligible persons is the statutory responsibility of the health boards in the first instance. Entitlemen...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Vaccination Programme.

Was asked: the steps he is taking to deal with the decrease in MMR vaccination levels revealed in recent figures published by the National Disease Surveillance Centre; and if he will make a statement on the matt...More Button

Recent immunisation uptake rates for MMR, as provided by the National Disease Surveillance Centre, for children at 24 months are as follows:More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Water Fluoridation.

Was asked: if he will make a statement on the findings of the Forum on Fluoridation.More Button

The use of fluoride technology is known to manifest a positive oral health outcome. Local and national surveys and studies conducted since the introduction of fluoridation in this country attest to th...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Tribunals of Inquiry.

Was asked: if he has received the report commissioned from a person (details supplied) in regard to the steps which are open to the State to investigate the role of certain multi-national companies which the Lin...More Button

On 7 November 2001, I appointed Mr. Paul Gardiner, senior counsel, to advise me in relation to a possible investigation into the actions of the multinational pharmaceutical companies whose products ar...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Services for People with Disabilities.

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the west Waterford area has been without the use of an occupational therapist for a number of months and that this is causing increasing difficulties f...More Button

The provision of health related support services, including occupational therapy, is a matter for the Eastern Regional Health Authority and the health boards in the first instance. Funding is also pro...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Tribunals of Inquiry.

Was asked: the Government's response to the findings of the Lindsay tribunal; the reason he has not referred a copy of the report to the Director of Public Prosecutions; and if he will make a statement on the ma...More Button

The report of the Lindsay tribunal relating to the infection with HIV and hepatitis C of persons with haemophilia was published on 5 September last. The report is a lengthy and detailed document. The ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - General Medical Services Scheme.

Was asked: if he will grant approval of funding for the provision of a Caredoc out-of-hours family doctor service for Waterford City and County; if he will consider the transfer of funding out of unused practice...More Button

We are advised by the GMS (Payments) Board that it is not possible, at this time, to transfer unused practice nurse or secretary grants to assist in the development of new general practitioner out of ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Medical Cards.

Was asked: the reason for the gross under-estimation by his Department of the cost of extending medical cards to everyone over 70; the total estimated cost at the latest date for which figures are available; and...More Button

The Government decision to extend automatic medical card eligibility to all persons aged 70 years and over with effect from 1 July 2001 was announced on budget day in December 2000. It was originally ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Accommodation.

Was asked: in regard to his announcement of 29 July 2002, the number of the promised 850 beds under the promised public private partnership now available; the number which will be available by the end of 2002; a...More Button

The 850 additional community nursing unit beds which I announced last July, under the pilot public private partnership (PPP) will be provided in 17 new sites in the Eastern Regional Health Authority a...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Incidence of vCJD.

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to a recent study published in the British Medical Journal suggesting that there could be as many as 6,600 people in Britain suffering from vCJD; his views on the call ...More Button

I am aware of the study referred to by the Deputy. I have accepted the advice of the national CJD committee that a similar tonsil prion study should be carried out in Ireland, as it will provide us wi...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to the recent national household survey published by the CSO, which showed that 44,000 people were on in-patient hospital waiting lists; the way in which he reconciles ...More Button

The quarterly national household survey (QNHS) published by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) on the 30 May 2002 produced a set of data on health, including data in relation to waiting lists. Some c...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Cancer Screening Programme.

Was asked: when it is intended to have the national cervical cancer screening scheme available on a national basis; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I am pleased to report that phase one of the national cervical screening programme was launched in the Mid-Western Health Board on 16 October 2000. Under the programme, cervical screening is being off...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Proposed Legislation.

Was asked: if the Government intends to introduce legislation to give effect to the judgment of the Supreme Court in the X case, having regard to the outcome of the referendum and the statements made by the Taoi...More Button

No decision has been made by the Government in relation to this matter. The question of what action, if any, which should be taken in light of the outcome of the referendum, remains under consideratio...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Radiography Services.

Was asked: if he will publish the strategy for the development of radiography services, by the working group which he established for the Southern Health Board region and the adjoining health boards; and if he w...More Button

As the Deputy is aware, an expert review group on radiotherapy services was established to consider the provision of radiotherapy services nationally. All health boards, including the Southern Health ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Crisis Pregnancy Agency.

Was asked: the progress which has been made to date with regard to the establishment of the Crisis Pregnancy Agency; the number of staff recruited to date; when it is expected that the agency will begin to offer...More Button

Was asked: if he will report on the operation, staffing, resources and effectiveness of the Crisis Pregnancy Agency.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 134 and 138 together. I established the Crisis Pregnancy Agency on 2 October 2001, under the Health (Corporate Bodies) Act, 1961. The task of the agency, as a planning...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Assisted Human Reproduction.

Was asked: the progress made to date by the Commission on Assisted Human Reproduction, which was established in February 2002; if he will urge the commission to expedite the publication of its report having rega...More Button

The subject of cloning is one that raises a wide range of very sensitive and complex issues with associated legal, ethical, social and medical implications. While there is no legislation regulating th...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: the Government's response to the NESF report on equality of access to hospital care; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the action he intends to take on foot of the report on equity in acute hospital care by the National Economic and Social Forum; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 137 and 301 together.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Speech Therapy Service.

Was asked: the services provided by his Department for students who have verbal dyspraxia which results in a speech and language disability and which is therefore accompanied by a mild learning disability; and i...More Button

The provision of health-related support services, including speech and language therapy for children with dyspraxia, is a matter for the Eastern Regional Health Authority and the health boards in the ...More Button

Was asked: the reason the position of speech and language therapist was removed from Ard Mhuire national school in Belgard, Tallaght; if he will reconsider that decision; the number of applications for grants, a...More Button

The provision of health-related services, including speech and language therapy, is a matter for the Eastern Regional Health Authority and the health boards in the first instance. Accordingly, the Dep...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Cancer Screening Programme.

Was asked: the number of health board areas where the BreastCheck screening service is available; the number where it is not available; the proportions of the population to whom it is available; when it is inten...More Button

As the Deputy is aware, BreastCheck, the national breast screening programme, commenced in March 2000 with phase one of the programme covering the Eastern Regional Health Authority, Midland Health Boa...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Therapy Training Places.

Was asked: the number of additional occupational therapy, speech therapy and physiotherapy training places announced by him and by the Minister for Education and Science in May 2002 to commence in autumn 2002 wh...More Button

Significant progress has been achieved in boosting the number of therapy training places in line with the recommendations of the report, Current and Future Supply and Demand Conditions in the Labour M...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: when a lung transplant facility as sought by the Cystic Fibrosis Association and as promised in the 1997 Fianna Fáil manifesto will be operational.More Button

Was asked: the extent to which facilities in respect of heart and lung transplants are likely to be improved; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 258 and 342 together.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Medicinal Products.

Was asked: if he will request the IMB to stop classifying food supplements such as cod liver oil, royal jelly and kelp with medicines in their rulings.More Button

In June 2000 the Irish Medicines Board was asked to develop proposals for the licensing of “traditional and alternative medicinal products including herbal medicinal products”. Under the IMB's propose...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - General Medical Services Scheme.

Was asked: the way in which the GMS scheme works; the amount doctors get paid under the scheme; the way in which it is calculated; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The GMS scheme provides for the medical treatment of persons deemed eligible to avail of these services by the local health board. With the exception of persons aged 70 years and over who have a statu...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Drug Treatment Services.

Was asked: if a place will be provided in Aislinn Treatment Centre, Ballyragget, County Kilkenny, for a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The provision of drug treatment services is the statutory responsibility of the health boards. The case referred to by the Deputy is a matter for the South-Eastern Health Board. My Department has aske...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Orthodontic Service.

Was asked: the position with regard to a person (details supplied) in County Wicklow who is waiting for orthodontic treatment since February 1996; when this person will be called for treatment; and if he will ma...More Button

Responsibility for the provision of orthodontic treatment to eligible persons in County Wicklow rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has asked the regional chief executive t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Autism Services.

Was asked: if funding will be provided for the specialised diets and treatments required for autism sufferers tested positive for the measles virus; if research is proposed into the biomedical aspects of autism;...More Button

Was asked: if funding will be provided for the specialised diets and treatments required for autism sufferers tested positive for the measles virus; if research is proposed into the biomedical aspects of autism;...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 268 and 271 together. Extensive research has and continues to be conducted worldwide in relation to the MMR vaccine. The World Health Organisation has indicated that M...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Health Board Services.

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 224 of 26 June 2002, the reason the award of a rights commissioner has not to date been made; if a person (details supplied) in Dublin 12 is entitled to interest ...More Button

Responsibility for this matter rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has therefore asked the chief executive officer of the Eastern Regional Health Authority to investigate t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: the reason, when Temple St. Hospital performed surgery on 68 infants per year for the past three years, the Comhairle na nOspidéal report of 1998 based its findings on only ten to 16 infants per year;...More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, Comhairle na nOspidéal is the statutory body set up under the Health Act, 1970, to regulate the appointment of consultant medical staff in hospitals, to specify the qualif...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Housing Aid for the Elderly.

Was asked: the reason no contractor has been sent out by the Western Health Board to a person (details supplied) in County Mayo to install PVC windows.More Button

Responsibility for the administration of the special housing aid scheme for the elderly in Mayo rests with the Western Health Board. My Department has, therefore, asked the chief executive officer of ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: when a person (details supplied) in County Mayo will be called for a knee operation.More Button

The provision of medical services in the case of the person named from County Mayo is the responsibility of the Western Health Board. My Department has asked the chief executive officer of the board t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Speech Therapy Service.

Was asked: when speech therapy will be provided for a person (details supplied) in County Mayo; and if appointments will be set up immediately for this person.More Button

The provision of health related services, including speech and language therapy, is a matter for the Eastern Regional Health Authority and the health boards in the first instance. Accordingly, the Dep...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Nursing Staff.

Was asked: if he will intervene in the dispute at the Daughters of Charity, Navan Road, Dublin 7; and if the seven nursing positions will be filled as soon as possible.More Button

My colleagues, Deputy Dempsey, Minister for Education and Science and Deputies Tim O'Malley and Brian Lenihan, Ministers of State at my Department, have met representatives of the parents. Officials f...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Adoption Board.

Was asked: the facilities which are available to a person (details supplied) in Dublin 10 who wishes to re-contact their natural mother.More Button

In the first instance the person concerned should contact the Adoption Board which will be able to assist in commencing the tracing of the person's natural mother. Any information that the person may ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Community Pharmacy Regulations.

Was asked: the position in relation to the community pharmacy regulations and in particular the position of young pharmacists who qualify outside the country.More Button

The Health (Community Pharmacy Contractor Agreement) Regulations, 1996, were revoked last January following advice from the Attorney General's office. This revocation has not affected the operation of...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Speech Therapy Service.

Was asked: if funding will be provided for speech therapy in the private sector for children who are on the waiting list for a considerable time in view of the fact that there appears to be an adequate supply of...More Button

Additional funding has been made available annually in recent years to the health boards in respect of the provision of health related support services, including speech and language therapy services,...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Proposed Legislation.

Was asked: the progress which has been made on the preparation of regulations for health and social professionals since publication of a discussion document in October 2000.More Button

The heads of a Bill establishing a system of statutory registration for health and social care professionals have been approved by Government and submitted to the office of the parliamentary counsel f...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Radiotherapy Services.

Was asked: when a radiotherapy unit for the south east will be approved; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if he will request that the expert group on the development of radiotherapy services finalise its report for submission; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the extent to which the crisis in the provision of radiotherapy to cancer patients throughout the country contributes to Ireland's unacceptably high cancer mortality rates; and if he will make a state...More Button

Was asked: his proposals to ensure the immediate completion and early publication of the report of the expert group on the future of radiotherapy services; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 287, 310, 325 and 326 together. As the Deputies are aware, an expert review group on radiotherapy services was established to consider the provision of radiotherapy se...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Medical Cards.

Was asked: if the South-Eastern Health Board will review as a matter of urgency an application for a medical card in the name of a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny; and if a card will be issued witho...More Button

Responsibility for the provision of a medical card in this case rests with the South-Eastern Health Board. My Department has therefore asked the chief executive officer to investigate the matter raise...More Button

Was asked: the position on a charge by a doctor of ?10 for a certificate by a medical card holder; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

General practitioners participating in the GMS scheme are obliged to provide first and last certificates free of charge to medical card holders in respect of absences from work. The provision of other...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: the reasons for the delay in re-calling a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny to St. Lukes Hospital, Kilkenny for an urgent operation; the reason this person has received no communication fro...More Button

The provision of services in the case of the person named from County Kilkenny is the responsibility of the South-Eastern Health Board. My Department has asked the chief executive officer of the board...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Housing Aid for the Elderly.

Was asked: if he will investigate the case of a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny who applied for assistance under the housing aid for the elderly scheme, to determine if the cost of the work undertak...More Button

Responsibility for the administration of the special housing aid scheme for the elderly in Kilkenny rests with the South-Eastern Health Board. My Department has, therefore, asked the chief executive o...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Services for People with Disabilities.

Was asked: the criteria used by the South-Eastern Health Board in decisions made on the allocation of home care to persons whose disability demands a high level of such care; if in this context, the case of a pe...More Button

The provision of health related services, including home help services, to people with physical and sensory disabilities is a matter for the Eastern Regional Health Authority and the health boards in ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Maternity Services.

Was asked: the reason the South-Eastern Health Board suddenly cut the travel expenses paid to midwives attending women in the area; if in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny the expense pa...More Button

The provision of maternity services to eligible persons in County Kilkenny is the statutory responsibility of the South-Eastern Health Board. However, in regard to the person to which the Deputy refer...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: if he or the South-Eastern Health Board will respond to written requests from the family of a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny for an investigation into the treatment of their mother when ...More Button

The provision of services in the case of the person named from County Kilkenny is the responsibility of the South-Eastern Health Board. My Department has asked the chief executive officer of the Board...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Adoption Services.

Was asked: the number of prospective adoptive parents in each health board area at present awaiting assessment for foreign adoption; the number waiting for more than one year, more than two years, more than thre...More Button

I wish to refer the Deputy to my answer to Parliamentary Question No. 1223 on 9 October 2002, where I outlined the waiting times for assessment for intercountry adoption at end June 2002 compared to e...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Vaccination Programme.

Was asked: the screening of medical history of children which is carried out before the MMR vaccine is given to them; the written information about the MMR vaccine given to parents before their children are give...More Button

The primary childhood immunisation programme provides for the immunisation of children under two years of age against a number of serious infectious diseases including diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

The issue raised by the Deputy is a matter for the Western Health Board. My Department has therefore asked the chief executive officer to investigate the matter and reply to the Deputy directly.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: if an appointment will be expedited for a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny; and if the age of the person and the fact that his leg injury is now affecting his back will be considered and a...More Button

The provision of services in the case of the person named from County Kilkenny is the responsibility of the South-Eastern Health Board. My Department has asked the chief executive officer of the board...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - General Medical Services.

Was asked: the payments to pharmacists nationwide who were in the GMS Scheme for 2001.More Button

The information requested by the Deputy is set out in the following table: Payments to Pharmacists GMS Scheme – 2001More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Orthodontic Service.

Was asked: the position in relation to a person (details supplied) in County Wicklow who is waiting for orthodontic treatment; when this person will be seen; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Responsibility for the provision of orthodontic treatment to eligible persons in County Wicklow rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has asked the regional chief executive t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Health Expenditure.

Was asked: the cuts he proposes to make in the health services through the health boards in the period 2002-03; the services jobs and sectors which will be affected; the impact on the health strategy; and if he ...More Button

My Department advised each health board of a range of measures to be taken to ensure that overall health spending in 2002 remained consistent with the approved spending limits for the year. That adjus...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Medical Cards.

Was asked: the reason persons (details supplied) in County Louth have been denied a medical card; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Responsibility for the provision of a medical card in this case rests with the North Eastern Health Board. My Department has therefore asked the chief executive officer to investigate the matter raise...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Ophthalmic Service.

Was asked: the reason there is no optician calling to the health centre in Ballinrobe, County Mayo; and when the health board intends to have this service restored to the Ballinrobe area.More Button

The provision of ophthalmic services, and any matters relating to such provision, within its functional area, is a matter for the relevant health board or the Eastern Regional Health Authority, ERHA. ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Suicide Prevention.

Was asked: the procedures for dealing with attempted suicide in Irish hospitals; his plans for reducing the number of attempted suicides; and if he will make a statement on the report that up to 10,000 cases of ...More Button

The recently published first annual report of the National Parasuicide Registry provides information on the general characteristics of people who attempt suicide. The analysis of this information is m...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Orthodontic Service.

Was asked: the number of children under 18 years of age on waiting lists for orthodontic treatment in each health board area.More Button

The provision of orthodontic treatment to eligible persons is the statutory responsibility of the health boards in the first instance. I am pleased to advise the Deputy that I have taken a number of m...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Speech Therapy Service.

Was asked: the reason no replacement speech and language therapist has been provided for St. John's special school, Dungarvan, County Waterford, despite previous assurances given by the South Eastern Health Boar...More Button

Responsibility for the provision of services to persons with an intellectual disability and those with autism in the Waterford area is a matter for the South Eastern Health Board. My Department has, t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospitals Building Programme.

Was asked: the progress which has been made in providing a replacement hospital for the district hospital, Dungarvan, County Waterford; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The provision of health services in County Waterford is a matter for the South Eastern Health Board. I understand that the board has set aside an amount of €2.764 million for the proposed development ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Services for People with Disabilities.

Was asked: if a placement for a person (details supplied) in County Waterford will be provided as a matter of urgency; if he will consider providing funding for the Spring Garden workshop, Waterford, under the n...More Button

Any additional revenue funding made available to my Department for services to persons with an intellectual disability or autism is allocated to the health boards and the Eastern Regional Health Autho...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Departmental Funding.

Was asked: the reason his Department refused funding to the Northern Area Health Board for the placement of students who were to commence studying on 7 October 2002 at Trinity College for a doctorate in clinical...More Button

In September 2000, a bidding process involving health agencies was initiated by my Department for the provision of increased psychology training places in response to the recommendations of the joint ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Health Services.

Was asked: if he will request the South Eastern Health Board to restore the hours of home care in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny and grant extra hours in view of this person's medical...More Button

Responsibility for the provision of health services in the Kilkenny area rests with the South Eastern Health Board. My Department has therefore asked the chief executive officer of the board to invest...More Button

Was asked: if he will make a statement on the public health needs of Inchicore and Bluebell (details attached).More Button

Responsibility for the provision of services to cater for public health needs within its functional area, is a matter for the relevant health board or the Eastern Regional Health Authority, ERHA. In t...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 155 of 7 December 2000, Parliamentary Question No. 222 of 6 March 2001, Parliamentary Question No. 205 of 27 June 2002 and direct correspondence to his office, if...More Button

My Department has asked the regional chief executive officer of the Eastern Regional Health Authority to ascertain the current position in relation to the person named by the Deputy and to reply to hi...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Personal Assistance Service.

Was asked: the reason a home respite worker cannot be provided to assist a person (details supplied) in County Kildare; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Drug Treatment Services.

Was asked: his views on whether it is prudent to permit in principle the construction of a drug treatment clinic at Loman's Road in Lucan; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if the South Western Area Health Board will be provided with funding to purchase land and property for a drug treatment facility in Clondalkin; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 316 and 318 together. The provision of drug treatment services is the statutory responsibility of the health boards, in this case the South Western Area Health Board. ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - National Drugs Strategy.

Was asked: the plans there are in place to provide real community drug treatment, whereby centres are built or added in each community, with a smaller, more client-centred focus; and if he will make a statement ...More Button

The National Drugs Strategy 2001-2008 was developed in partnership between the statutory, voluntary and community sectors and following comprehensive public consultation. Its overall strategic objecti...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Drugs Payment Scheme.

Was asked: if it is proposed to include nystatine powder in the drug payment scheme; if not, the reason therefor; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

On the basis of the information available to me, I am not aware that a product of this nature is commercially available in this country. However, if such a product were identified as necessary and pro...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Euro Coins.

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to any health implications for people from this country and the European Union who are nickel sensitive to the new euro coins that appear to have a high nickel content;...More Button

Responsibility for the manufacture and circulation of Irish coins rests with the Central Bank of Ireland. However, the Central Bank has informed me that as a result of the introduction of the euro, th...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Orthodontic Service.

Was asked: the position of a person (details supplied) in County Kildare in relation to an application for orthodontic treatment; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Responsibility for the provision of orthodontic treatment for eligible persons in County Kildare rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has asked the regional chief executive ...More Button

Was asked: when a person (details supplied) in Dublin 9 will have their orthodontic treatment commenced; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Responsibility for the provision of orthodontic treatment for eligible persons in Dublin 9 rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has asked the regional chief executive to inv...More Button

Was asked: when a person (details supplied) in Dublin 5 will have their orthodontic treatment commenced; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Responsibility for the provision of orthodontic treatment for eligible persons in Dublin 5 rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has asked the regional chief executive to inv...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: if he will investigate with the Eastern Regional Health Authority the reason a person (details supplied) has only been offered an appointment in January 2003 when they were first diagnosed with prostr...More Button

Responsibility for the provision of hospital services for residents of Dublin, Kildare and Wicklow rests with the Eastern Regional Health Authority. My Department has, therefore, asked the regional ch...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Cancer Treatment Services.

Was asked: his proposals, bearing in mind that Waterford Regional Hospital has been designated a regional cancer care centre in the cancer strategy, to provide the full range of treatment services to the highest...More Button

Was asked: bearing in mind that Waterford Regional Hospital has been designated as one of the 13 specialist breast cancer units, if patients, having been seen in a multidisciplinary setting for breast cancer, wi...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 327 and 329 together. Since 2000, €12.1 million of dedicated funding has been allocated to the SEHB specifically for the development of oncology and related services. ...More Button

Was asked: his proposals to provide quality cancer care for all citizens needing it, irrespective of income, or distance from Dublin, Cork or Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if he has satisfied himself that patients in need of chemotherapy or other forms of cancer treatment have ready access to treatments and facilities without referral to waiting lists; and if he will ma...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 328 and 340 together.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Health Board Services.

Was asked: if funding will be provided to the Western Health Board to support the establishment of a residential hostel for the suicidally vulnerable in Boyle, County Roscommon; and if he will make a statement o...More Button

The provision of funding to individuals or groups for projects in the area of suicide prevention and research is primarily a matter for each health board. Nationally since 1997 more than €6 million in...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Dental Service.

Was asked: his Department's policy regarding parental access to children being treated by a dentist under the public dental service; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The provision of dental services to eligible children is the statutory responsibility of the health boards in the first instance. The Dental Council is the body with statutory responsibility for promo...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Meningitis Incidence.

Was asked: the number of incidents of meningitis reported in the past 12 months; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

There are two forms of meningitis, namely bacterial and acute viral meningitis. The National Disease Surveillance Centre collates and interprets data on infectious diseases in Ireland. Bacterial menin...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - EU Directives.

Was asked: the status of EU directives concerning food supplements and herbal medicine products; his views on same; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The examination of the EU Directive on traditional herbal medicinal products is currently continuing at the European Parliament and Council. I welcome the benefits that the new directive will provide ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Mental Health Services.

Was asked: if his attention has been drawn to any cutbacks affecting services in St. Raphael's, Celbridge, County Kildare and St. John of God's, Islandbridge, Dublin 8; if extra funds will be allocated to these ...More Button

Responsibility for the provision of funding for organisations providing services for persons with an intellectual disability or autism in the Dublin region is a matter in the first instance for the Ea...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Respite Care Facilities.

Was asked: the extent to which he proposes to improve and extend respite care facilities; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Psychological Service.

Was asked: if he has satisfied himself regarding the adequacy of numbers of psychologists available through the various health boards; his plans to increase the numbers in line with current demands; and if he wi...More Button

I am aware in the context of work carried out by my Department along with health service employers and IMPACT on the joint review group on psychology services in the health service that shortages of p...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Juvenile Offenders.

Was asked: if he will enter into negotiations with his colleagues, the Ministers for Justice, Equality and Law Reform and Education and Science, with a view to dramatically addressing the urgent need for custodi...More Button

Progress has been made on the need for custodial or care places for children. The Department of Health and Children and the Departments of Justice, Equality and Law Reform and Education and Science ar...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: if he has examined in detail, the entire question of delivery of health services with particular reference to the current inability to meet requirements in respect of maternity needs, heart surgery, h...More Button

A detailed review of all aspects of the health services was conducted by my Department last year, in consultation with relevant interests and the general public, as part of the lead in to the preparat...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: the number of patients currently on waiting lists for cataract removal; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the current number of persons on waiting lists for heart and hip surgery; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 339 and 343 together. The number of people on public hospital waiting lists for ophthalmology, cardiac and orthopaedic surgery for the quarter ended March 2002, the la...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Speech Therapy Service.

Was asked: if he has satisfied himself regarding the adequacy of speech therapy services throughout the country; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Medicinal Products.

Was asked: the position in regard to various herbal medicines with particular reference to EU directives; the position adopted by Ireland in respect of the directive in question; and if he will make a statement ...More Button

The examination of the EU directive on traditional herbal medicinal products is currently continuing at the European Parliament and Council. I welcome the benefits that the new directive will provide ...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Services.

Was asked: the degree to which the Maynooth Respite Hospital is fully operational; the number of beds currently occupied and anticipated; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The provision of health services in County Kildare is a matter for the South-Western Area Health Board operating under the aegis of the Eastern Regional Health Authority.More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospital Waiting Lists.

Was asked: the extent to which patients have gone outside the jurisdiction to obtain various health or surgical services with particular reference to those on waiting lists here; and if he will make a statement ...More Button

Under the national treatment purchase fund – NTPF – initiative, 38 patients have been treated outside the jurisdiction to date. Capacity to treat 400 patients per month is now in place, i.e. 300 in Ir...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - School Medical Examination Service.

Was asked: if he has fully satisfied himself with the school medical examination service; if he anticipates an augmentation to address particular issues; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The provision of school medical services, as an integral component of child health services, is the statutory responsibility of the health boards. The 1999 Best Health for Children report commissioned...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Nursing Staff.

Was asked: the total number of nurses currently required throughout the entire health services; the number of vacant positions to be filled if any; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Health Service Employers Agency, HSEA, undertook a survey of nursing vacancies at 30 April 2002. A copy of this survey will be forwarded directly to the Deputy. The following are the main points o...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Hospitals Building Programme.

Was asked: the stage the proposed new building of St. John's Hospital, Enniscorthy, is at; if there is or was a problem of planning at any one of the stages; when he expects the new building will start; and if h...More Button

The provision of health services in County Wexford is the responsibility of the South-Eastern Health Board. Under the National Development Plan 2001-2006, the South-Eastern Health Board was advised of...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Departmental Expenditure.

Was asked: the amount of money that remains available to his Department from the voted spending allocation agreed in the Revised Estimates 2002 to spend in the last quarter of 2002 for capital spending and for c...More Button

The cash that remains available to my Department from the voted spending allocation agreed in the Revised Estimates 2002 for the last quarter of 2002 for capital spending is €225 million and for curre...More Button

Adjournment Debate. - Price Inflation.

Was asked: his estimate of the average index of inflation between the last quarter of 2001 and the last quarter of 2002 in the cost of employment goods and services which make up his Department's expenditure.More Button

In the time period referred to, the consumer price index has shown an increase of 4.5% and pay costs have increased by 4%, since 1 October last, as a result of the final agreed increases under the Pro...More Button


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