Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Biomedical Research.

13.

asked the Minister for Health the reason he is withdrawing State investment in biomedical research; and if this will result in a loss of many of our post-graduates.

The Health Research Board is the statutory agency to which Exchequer funding is allocated for health research, including bio-medical research. The question of the disbursement of the Exchequer funds to bio-medical medical research is, of course, a matter for the board having regard to its priorities for research generally.

In that regard, the board, pending the outcome of discussions with my Department on alternative arrangements in regard to its continued involvement in information systems, expects to be in a position to continue, to a large extent, its funding of bio-medical research at 1988 levels.

In view of the fact that the Health Research Board's funding was halved in 1989 by a reduction of £1 million, what services does the Minister envisage will be scrapped this year?

I am unaware of any particular services that will be scrapped in 1989.

The Minister should talk to them.

It is a matter for the board as to what services to provide. Certain services formerly carried out by the board have been transferred to other areas — for example, the hospital in-patient inquiry systems and some of the extra mural research.