Wednesday, 8 May 2019

Questions (906)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

906. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health his plans to reduce or abolish the per-item prescription charges in budget 2020; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19512/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The Programme for Partnership Government contains a commitment to reduce the cost of medicines by reducing the prescription charge for medical card holders.

In line with this commitment, in budget 2019 I announced a reduction in the prescription charge to €1.50, subject to a monthly cap of €15, for all medical card holders over the age of 70. This reduction came into effect on 1 April 2019.

This announcement follows on from my commitment in last year's budget, where I reduced the prescription charge to €2 for all medical card holders aged under 70.

I intend to consider any proposals for further reductions in the prescription charge in the context of the implementation of the health commitments in the Programme for Government and with regard to the funding available.