Sunday 25 September 2016

10,000 extra medical cards for young

Published 06/05/2016 | 02:30

Medical cards will be given to an additional 10,000 children under the terms of the new Programme for Government. Stock photo: PA
Medical cards will be given to an additional 10,000 children under the terms of the new Programme for Government. Stock photo: PA

Medical cards will be given to an additional 10,000 children under the terms of the new Programme for Government.

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The measure, which will be delivered in October's Budget, is aimed at all children currently in receipt of the domiciliary care allowance.

An advisory group will be asked to examine the guidelines for awarding medical cards for patients undergoing treatment for cancer.

In relation to the future of the health service, an all-party committee will be tasked with developing a "single long-term vision" for 10 years.

The HSE will continue to be dismantled and replaced with a Health Commission, which will have its own ring-fenced budget.

The number of GP training places will be increased by 100 over the next five years.

The document states that hospital managements may be temporarily replaced with other providers if they are deemed to be under-performing.

As previously flagged, the government will work to ensure that the vast majority of patients are waiting no longer than six hours in emergency departments.

The government will "immediately proceed to the design and planning stage for a dedicated Cystic Fibrosis Unit" at Beaumont Hospital in a move that will appease Dublin Bay North TD Finian McGrath.

A review to consider extending the opening hours of the cardiac unit in Waterford General Hospital is also promised.

Funding will be increased for homecare packages and home help every year. And there will be increases in the benefits paid to disabled people and carers.

Prescription charges for medical card holders will be slashed.

Funding for the Housing adaptation grant, which is paid to those with disabilities, will be increased by 10pc to €55m

In relation to mental health, counselling services in primary care will be extended to those on low incomes.

Irish Independent

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