Written Answers. - Army Medical Inspections.

Michael Moynihan

Question:

61 Mr. Moynihan asked the Minister for Defence if he will outline whether medical inspections are now required to be undertaken prior to enlistment in the reserve; whether this was the practice last year; the reason for the change in policy; if he will outline by whom these medical inspections are being made; whether there is any delay in the Eastern or Western Commands in the attestation of recruits due to the lack of notification of such procedures to unit and sub-unit commanders; whether reserve units which are remote from a medical hospital company are disadvantaged in expeditious processing of recruits; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Until recently there was no provision for medical examinations of FCA recruits on enlistment although there was a requirement for personnel to undergo a medical examination when reporting for annual training. It is now considered preferable from an administrative point of view to have a medical examination on enlistment as the previous system of medical examinations on reporting for annual training had placed a considerable strain on the resources of the Army Medical Corps.

The revised arrangements have been in operation since 1 September 1991. Similar procedures have been operated in the Slua Muirí for a number of years.

Medical examinations are carried out by members of the Army Medical Corps or by doctors employed by the Department where Army Medical Corps personnel are not available.

Any delays which may have arisen because of the revised arrangements have now been eliminated and no FCA unit, irrespective of its location, should be at a disadvantage in this regard.