Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Questions (643)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

643. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Health if he will have the Department of Finance amend Section 469 (1)(f) of the Taxes Consolidation Act (1997) to delete the words, "or similar treatment prescribed by a practitioner", and to leave the word, "physiotherapy", to ensure that extra costs are not imposed on physiotherapy patients who have not been referred by their general practitioner, hospital accident and emergency or medical consultant and to ensure that the Government's commitment to the provision of health care in the primary care setting is protected and to ensure that it meets its goal of meeting 90% of health care needs through the primary care setting; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12903/13]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

Tax policy is a matter for the Department of Finance and, therefore, the Department of Health has no role in making such determinations. However, the Department has already been in contact with the Department of Finance about this issue. The Department outlined to the Department of Finance the important role that physiotherapists play in primary healthcare and indicated support of measures which would encourage patients to avail of early intervention services, such as physiotherapy in a primary care setting.