Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Questions (773)

Kathleen Funchion


773. Deputy Kathleen Funchion asked the Minister for Health the timeframe for the new general practitioner contract for nursing homes. [13437/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

GPs contracted by the HSE under the GMS scheme are obliged to provide services to their medical card and GP visit card patients, including those who are resident in nursing homes. GPs are remunerated for these services primarily on a capitation basis, with a range of additional support payments and fees for specific items of service. An annual capitation payment of €434.15 is payable in respect of each GMS patient over 70 years of age residing in a private nursing home approved by the HSE for periods in excess of 5 weeks.

There are no plans at present to introduce a new contract specifically for the provision of general practitioner services to nursing homes. However, the Deputy will be aware that talks are ongoing with GP representatives in relation to the development of modernised GP contractual arrangements. The focus of the current phase of the talks is on developing a range of modernisation, reform and sustainability measures and the development of a chronic disease management programme for GMS and GP visit card patients.

Any agreement must substantially benefit patients and provide value for money for the taxpayer.

In line with the long-established approach to such processes, and by agreement of the parties concerned, I am not in position to give further details while engagement between the parties is under way.