Health Services Staff Remuneration

Questions (439)

John Brassil

Question:

439. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Health the reason the WRC agreement of 2017 has not been fully implemented to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25355/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly on this matter.

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

Questions (440)

Eugene Murphy

Question:

440. Deputy Eugene Murphy asked the Minister for Health the number of persons on the ENT outpatient waiting list at Roscommon County Hospital in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, in tabular form; the average waiting period by triage category; the steps being taken to address the waiting periods; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25358/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I am conscious that waiting times are often unacceptably long and of the burden that this places on patients and their families. In this regard, the Government is committed to improving waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures.

The joint Department of Health/HSE/National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) Scheduled Care Access Plan 2019 was published in March and sets out measures to improve care for patients waiting for scheduled care in 2019 by reducing waiting times for inpatient/day case treatment and outpatient appointments.

A key element of the Plan is the stabilisation of the Outpatient Waiting List. Under the Plan the HSE, in line with the National Service Plan, will aim to deliver 3.3 million outpatient appointments, of which approximately 1 million will be first appointments. For its part the NTPF will aim to deliver 40,000 first Outpatient appointments.

The plan includes a target to reduce the number of patients waiting for and Inpatient/Day Case procedure from just over 70,000 in December 2018 to 60,000 by year end and to reduce the number of patients waiting for a first Outpatient appointment from over 516,000 at the end of 2018 to under 509,000 by the end of 2019. The latter target takes into account the fact that more than 800,000 new patients will be added to the Outpatient waiting list in 2019, a figure that is based on trends for the previous two years.

The NTPF advise that over recent months they have placed a particular focus on engaging with hospital groups and individual hospitals to identify outpatient waiting list proposals. While the NTPF have already approved over 38,000 outpatient appointments, they advise that the impact of these initiatives may not be seen until the end of the year. Approximately 75% of outpatient appointments approved to date relate to 4 high-volume specialities, specifically Ophthalmology, ENT, Orthopaedics, and Dermatology.

As the question in relation to the number of persons on the ENT outpatient waiting list at Roscommon County Hospital in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, and the average waiting period by triage category, is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Primary Medical Certificates Data

Questions (441)

Eugene Murphy

Question:

441. Deputy Eugene Murphy asked the Minister for Health the number of applications for primary medical certificates in counties Roscommon and Galway to date; the number of applications awaiting assessment in both counties to date; the waiting period in both counties for primary medical certificate applications; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25360/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

Cancer Services Provision

Questions (442)

Brendan Griffin

Question:

442. Deputy Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Health his views on a matter in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25361/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

It is not the intention that there be any unintended consequences of the Bill. It is not disputed that people can access various therapies. The aim of the Bill is to ensure no false linkages are made between accessing those therapies and a claim that something is a treatment for cancer. People suffering from cancer can be in a very vulnerable position and open to false claims or manipulation. The intention of the Bill is about safeguarding our citizens and making sure they have accurate information regarding medical and scientific advice on how to cure and treat cancer.

Health Services Provision

Questions (443)

John Brassil

Question:

443. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Health if the HSE has paid an interim travel payment as agreed until a procedure is in place in respect of calculating actual travel time to healthcare support assistant; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25363/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly on this matter.

Health Services Staff Remuneration

Questions (444)

John Brassil

Question:

444. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Health his plans to use the WRC agreement of 2017 which sets out a clear vision for the role of healthcare support assistants; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25364/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly on this matter.

Home Care Packages

Question No. 446 answered with Question No. 422.

Questions (445)

John Brassil

Question:

445. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Health if the full cost-benefit analysis and risk assessment process has been completed in respect of switching to a fair deal model for home care; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25365/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

The development of a new, stand alone statutory scheme and system of regulation for home-support services is a key objective of the Government, which the Department of Health is currently progressing. This includes work to determine the optimal model for, and approach to the development of, the statutory scheme within the broader context of the Sláintecare reforms.

The development of a new statutory scheme and system of regulation for home-support services is a complex process to which cost–benefit analysis and risk-assessment will be integral, and this work is currently on-going.

Question No. 446 answered with Question No. 422.

Long-Term Illness Scheme Coverage

Questions (447)

Denis Naughten

Question:

447. Deputy Denis Naughten asked the Minister for Health his plans to add motor neurone disease to the list of illnesses covered by the long-term illness scheme; when the long-term illness scheme was last updated; his plans to add additional conditions to the list; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25372/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

The LTI Scheme was established under Section 59(3) of the Health Act 1970 (as amended). The conditions covered by the LTI are: acute leukaemia; mental handicap; cerebral palsy; mental illness (in a person under 16); cystic fibrosis; multiple sclerosis; diabetes insipidus; muscular dystrophies; diabetes mellitus; parkinsonism; epilepsy; phenylketonuria; haemophilia; spina bifida; hydrocephalus; and conditions arising from the use of thalidomide.

Under the LTI Scheme, patients receive drugs, medicines, and medical and surgical appliances directly related to the treatment of their illness, free of charge. The Scheme was last amended in 1975.

There are no plans to extend the list of conditions covered by the Scheme at this time. However, I wish to inform the Deputy that the LTI Scheme will be included as part of a review of the current eligibility framework, including the basis for existing hospital and medication charges, to be carried out under commitments given in the Sláintecare Implementation Strategy.

For people who are not eligible for the LTI Scheme, there are other arrangements which protect them from excessive medicine costs.

Under the Drug Payment Scheme, no individual or family pays more than €124 a month towards the cost of approved prescribed medicines. The scheme significantly reduces the cost burden for families and individuals with ongoing expenditure on medicines.

People who cannot, without undue hardship, arrange for the provision of medical services for themselves and their dependants may be entitled to a medical card. In the assessment process, the HSE can take into account medical costs incurred by an individual or a family.

People who are not eligible for a medical card may still be able to avail of a GP visit card, which covers the cost of GP consultations.

Occupational Therapy Waiting Lists

Questions (448)

Eugene Murphy

Question:

448. Deputy Eugene Murphy asked the Minister for Health the number of persons waiting to access occupational therapy adult services in County Roscommon to date; the number on waiting lists for priority one, two and three cases, respectively; the number of children waiting to access occupational therapy children’s services in the county; the average waiting periods; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25373/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

Hospital Waiting Lists

Questions (449)

Robert Troy

Question:

449. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Health if an appointment will be expedited with an orthopaedic surgeon in the Regional Midland Hospital, Tullamore, for a person (details supplied). [25374/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.

The National Waiting List Management Policy, a standardised approach to managing scheduled care treatment for in-patient, day case and planned procedures, since January 2014, has been developed to ensure that all administrative, managerial and clinical staff follow an agreed national minimum standard for the management and administration of waiting lists for scheduled care. This policy, which has been adopted by the HSE, sets out the processes that hospitals are to implement to manage waiting lists.

In relation to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Court Judgments

Questions (450)

John Brassil

Question:

450. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Health the plans the HSE has to ensure a ruling (details supplied) is implemented in full in compliance with legislation for all relevant staff groups; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25375/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly on this matter.

HSE Properties

Questions (451, 452)

Catherine Murphy

Question:

451. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Health the amount of land purchased and leased by size and amount expended in the past five years to date; the location of same; the term of the lease and amount expended per year in cases in which land is leased; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25387/19]

View answer

Catherine Murphy

Question:

452. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Health the number of buildings and property purchased and leased and the amount expended in the past five years to date; the location of same; the term of the lease and the amount expended per year in cases in which properties are leased; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25404/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 451 and 452 together.

As the Health Service Executive is responsible for the management of the public healthcare property estate, I have asked the HSE to respond directly to you in relation to this matter.

Home Care Packages Provision

Questions (453)

Pearse Doherty

Question:

453. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Health when an approved home support package will be in place for a person (details supplied) in County Donegal; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25422/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Court Judgments

Question No. 455 answered with Question No. 422.

Questions (454)

John Brassil

Question:

454. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Health the length of time the attention of the HSE was drawn to a ruling (details supplied) and its legislative obligation to implement same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25424/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly on this matter.

Question No. 455 answered with Question No. 422.

Medical Aids and Appliances Applications Data

Questions (456)

Tom Neville

Question:

456. Deputy Tom Neville asked the Minister for Health the number of persons on the waiting list for wheelchairs nationally; the number on a waiting list for the provision of wheelchairs in the HSE west; the number of those waiting less than 12 months, 12 months to two years and more than two years for a new wheelchair and an upgraded wheelchair; and the estimated cost involved to provide each person on the waiting list with new or upgraded wheelchairs as per the requests which were sent on their behalf to the HSE. [25426/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

As this is a service matter it has been referred to the HSE for reply to the Deputy.

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

Questions (457)

Michael McGrath

Question:

457. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Health his plans to introduce financial support or assistance for non-medical card holders who require a wig on a reasonably frequent basis as a result of alopecia; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25428/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

As this is a service matter it has been referred to the HSE for reply to the Deputy.

Home Care Packages Data

Questions (458)

Brian Stanley

Question:

458. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Health the number of persons in counties Laois and Offaly approved for home help and home care hours; and the number of persons on the waiting list despite having already been approved for hours. [25435/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

As these are a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Home Care Packages Data

Questions (459)

Brian Stanley

Question:

459. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Health the number of persons in counties Longford and Westmeath approved for home help and home care hours; and the number of persons on the waiting list despite having already been approved for hours. [25436/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.