Tuesday, 9 July 2019

Questions (486)

John Curran


486. Deputy John Curran asked the Minister for Health the reason he has not met the commitment to fund 50% of a service (details supplied); when the commitment will be met; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29814/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The Irish Cancer Society operates the Night Nursing Service, an end-of-life nursing care programme which can be used by people with a cancer or a non-malignant diagnosis. The Irish Cancer Society funds care for people with a cancer diagnosis, while the Irish Hospice Foundation funds care for those with a non-cancer diagnosis. The Service can be accessed through referral from the Specialist Community Palliative Care Team, Public Health Nurse, GP or hospital-based Specialist Palliative Care Team. The HSE began co-funding of the service in 2016.

The HSE’s Palliative Care Services Three Year Development Framework, 2017-2019, recommends that steps be taken to progress towards the provision of 50% statutory funding of the service on a phased basis.  

Against this background, the level of statutory funding for the service increased from €88,000 in 2016 to €250,000 in 2018 as set out in the following table. 

Details of Irish Cancer Society expenditure on the service last year will be available on the publication of its annual report for 2018.


 HSE funding

Irish Cancer Society expenditure

Irish Hospice Foundation expenditure 











 Not available


The HSE has allocated €250,000 towards the cost of the service in 2019.

The level of funding available for the Department of Health in 2020 and the quantum of services to be provided by the HSE, including support for the Night Nursing Service, will be considered as part of the national Estimates and budgetary process and National Service Planning.