Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Questions (79)

Mick Wallace


79. Deputy Mick Wallace asked the Minister for Health if it is possible for medical card holders to change their general practitioners in certain circumstances where difficulties arise in the professional relationship between a patient and GP (details supplied); if his attention has been drawn to any difficulties faced by patients when trying to switch their GPs for this reason; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30385/13]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The General Medical Services (GMS) Scheme allows GMS patients (medical card and GP visit card holders) to choose their GP from a list of locally based contracted doctors, or GMS patients may be assigned to a GP contractor’s panel in certain circumstances specified in the contract. The purpose of a GMS patient either choosing or being assigned to one GP is to ensure continuity of care.

A person who no longer wishes to avail himself/herself of the medical practitioner with whom he/she is registered may seek to be included on the list of another doctor in the area participating in the GMS Scheme by completing a Change of Doctor form and submitting it to the HSE Primary Care Reimbursement Services (PCRS). This form is available from the HSE’s Local Health Office and online at: https://www.sspcrs.ie/portal/medapp/printforms.jsp

When an individual submits a Change of Doctor form and where the information provided is correct, the appropriate changes are made and a new medical card is issued. Where a person has had three unsuccessful attempts to secure another GMS doctor, the medical card holder should contact PCRS in writing, providing details of the doctors they have contacted, and PCRS will assign the person to a GMS doctor within their locality.