Final plan for admissions cuts is 'less severe'
CUTS to hospital admissions will not be as severe as first planned, Health Minister Mary Harney signalled yesterday.
A draft service plan for the Health Service Executive had provided for 541,000 inpatient treatments this year, compared with nearly 595,000 in 2009.
Ms Harney said she was due to receive the final service plan of the Health Service Executive (HSE) for 2010 yesterday and did not envisage it would have to reduce hospital admissions by 54,000 this year.
However, she added that the move to treat more patients on a day basis or in the community would continue.
The minister also indicated that the HSE was reviewing its vaccination programme for swine flu in the light of the fall in cases of the virus.
At-risk groups are being asked to book an appointment at one of the HSE clinics by February 1 after which it is expected to be offered to the general healthy population.
However, if there is low demand, some of the HSE clinics may be closed.