Health Services Provision

Questions (1155, 1156)

Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

1155. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Health the waiting lists for children for speech and language therapy in CHO7. [31916/19]

View answer

Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

1156. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Health the waiting lists for children for occupational therapy in CHO7. [31917/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 1155 and 1156 together.

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.

Occupational Therapy Waiting Lists

Questions (1157)

Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

1157. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Health the waiting lists for persons over 65 years of age for occupational therapy in CHO7. [31918/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Physiotherapy Provision

Questions (1158)

Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

1158. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Health the waiting lists for children for physiotherapy in CHO7. [31919/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Physiotherapy Provision

Questions (1159)

Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

1159. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Health the waiting lists for persons over 65 years of age for physiotherapy in CHO7. [31920/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Home Care Packages Data

Questions (1160)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1160. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health further to Parliamentary Question No. 482 of 18 June 2019, the amount spent on home support from January to May 2018; the hours delivered; and the number of persons to which hours have been delivered in tabular form. [31924/19]

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.

Medical Aids and Appliances Applications Data

Questions (1161)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1161. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the generations of a device (details supplied) that have been implanted and used in children that attend Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin since they have been in use; the location this information is recorded; and if parents are informed at the time of consent regarding which generation of the device their child will have implanted in their body. [31925/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Medical Aids and Appliances Applications

Questions (1162)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1162. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the policy regarding an explanted device (details supplied) in Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin; if any of the devices have been sent for analysis; if so, the retrieval centre to which they were sent; if parents are informed of the outcomes if the device has been sent for analysis to a retrieval centre; and if these outcomes are documented in the health record of the child. [31926/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Medical Aids and Appliances Applications

Questions (1163)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1163. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the policy of Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin regarding reporting medical device safety incidents to the Health Products Regulatory Authority in relation to a device (details supplied); the circumstances in which a clinician should report medical device safety issues; and if there have been adverse incidents reported to the HPRA in regard to the device. [31927/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

The current medical device regulatory framework provides for mandatory reporting of all incidents by the manufacturer to the Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA) when the incident occurs in Ireland. Incidents which should be reported to the HPRA are any malfunction or deterioration in the characteristics and/or performance of a device, as well as any inadequacy in the labelling or the instructions for use which, directly or indirectly, might lead to or might have led to the death of a patient, or user or of other persons or to a serious deterioration in their state of health.

User / healthcare professional reporting is not mandatory in Ireland but is strongly encouraged by the HPRA. The HPRA has an online incident user report form on their website to facilitate user reporting.

No incidents have been reported to the HPRA in relation to the MAGEC Rods. 

As the first part of the question relates to the policy of Our Lady's Children Hospital regarding reporting medical device safety incidents we have sent this to the HSE for direct reply to the Deputy.

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

Questions (1164)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1164. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the generation of a device (details supplied) in use in Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin. [31928/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

Questions (1165)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1165. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of external remote controllers located in Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin; the population the controllers serve; if the controllers are ever removed to other locations; and if so, the locations in this regard. [31929/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Health Services Provision

Questions (1166)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1166. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the data available to the HSE regarding the safety of titanium ions in the blood; and his views on whether children should have blood tests to check for such levels in the blood during their treatment with a device (details supplied). [31930/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Titanium is a commonly used material in a range of medical devices. Medical device manufacturers must ensure the safety and biocompatibility of any materials used in the device, taking into consideration the amount of time that they may remain in contact with a patient’s body.

Before an implantable medical device can be placed on the Irish market, the product undergoes assessment by a notified body, who must assess whether the medical device conforms to the essential requirements of the medical device legislation including those relating to material safety and biocompatibility.

Ongoing monitoring of the levels of titanium ions in patients with Magec Spinal Rods remains under discussion. The Department and the Health Products Regulatory Authority are not aware of any current recommendation in place in Ireland for such testing.

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

Questions (1167)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1167. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the reason children that attend Temple Street Children’s University Hospital for scoliosis care do not have access to a device (details supplied) such as their counterparts in Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin; if there is clinical backing for the use of the device in the hospital; and if not, the reason it does not use the device. [31931/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Hospital Procedures

Questions (1168)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1168. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of scoliosis surgeries carried out in University Hospital Galway in each of the years 2011 to 2018 and to date in 2019, in tabular form. [31932/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

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

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

Questions (1169)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1169. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of children 18 years of age and under waiting for scoliosis surgery in University Hospital Galway; and the length of time such children have been waiting in tabular form. [31933/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Reducing waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures is a key commitment of government. Budget 2019 announced that the Government had further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the National Treatment Purchase Fund increasing from €55 million in 2018 to €75 million in 2019. The joint Department of Health, HSE, and NTPF Scheduled Care Access Plan 2019 was published in March. Under the Plan the HSE, in line with the National Service Plan, will aim to deliver 1.155 million elective inpatient and day case discharges and 3.3 million outpatient appointments, of which more than 1 million will be to new patients. For its part, the NTPF will provide additionality through the provision of 25,000 IPDC appointments, 5,000 GI scopes, and 40,000 outpatient appointments.

In relation to the specific question raised regarding the number of children waiting for scoliosis surgery in University Hospital Galway and the length of time they have been waiting, I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy.

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

Questions (1170)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1170. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of adults waiting for scoliosis surgery in University Hospital Galway; and the length of time these adults been waiting in tabular form. [31934/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Reducing waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures is a key commitment of government. Budget 2019 announced that the Government had further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the National Treatment Purchase Fund increasing from €55 million in 2018 to €75 million in 2019. The joint Department of Health, HSE, and NTPF Scheduled Care Access Plan 2019 was published in March. Under the Plan the HSE, in line with the National Service Plan, will aim to deliver 1.155 million elective inpatient and day case discharges and 3.3 million outpatient appointments, of which more than 1 million will be to new patients. For its part, the NTPF will provide additionality through the provision of 25,000 IPDC appointments, 5,000 GI scopes, and 40,000 outpatient appointments.

In relation to the specific question raised regarding the number of adults waiting for scoliosis surgery in University Hospital Galway and the length of time they have been waiting, I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy.

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

Questions (1171)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1171. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of children waiting on an outpatient appointment for orthopaedics in University Hospital Galway; and the length of time these children have been waiting in tabular form. [31935/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Reducing waiting time for patients for hospital operations and procedures is a key priority for Government. In this regard, the Government is committed to improving waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures.

Budget 2019 announced that the Government has further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) increasing from €55 million in 2018 to €75 million in 2019. The joint Department of Health/HSE/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 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.

In addition, my Department is working with the HSE and NTPF, under the Access Plan, with the objective of developing medium-long term improvement initiatives for patient access to hospital procedures. This will include moving care to more appropriate settings and providing care at the lowest level of complexity such as providing ophthalmology in the community; maximising the use of Advanced Nurse Practitioner led clinics; and physiotherapists to manage orthopaedic clinics.

The data requested by the Deputy is contained in the following table.

University Hospital Galway OP Paediatric waiting list for Orthopaedics

0-3 Mths

3-6 Mths

6-9 Mths

9-12 Mths

12-15 Mths

15-18 Mths

18+

Total

130

52

27

21

11

19

16

276

National Treatment Purchase Fund Data

Questions (1172)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1172. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the reason hospitals (details supplied) report all those waiting for care as adults; and his views on whether the National Treatment Purchase Fund, NTPF, monthly figures are a true reflection of the number of children waiting for care via the HSE in view of the fact that the true numbers of children waiting are not publicly known. [31936/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Reducing waiting time for patients for hospital operations and procedures is a key priority for Government. In this regard, the Government is committed to improving waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures.

Budget 2019 announced that the Government has further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) increasing from €55 million in 2018 to €75 million in 2019. The joint Department of Health/HSE/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. The plan places a strong focus on ten high-volume Inpatient/Day Case procedures. When combined with HSE activity, it is projected that the NTPF will be in a position to offer treatment to all clinically suitable patients waiting more than 6 months for one of these high-volume procedures.

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 NTPF have advised my Department that the hospitals listed by the Deputy do not generally treat children (defined as any patient aged 16 years or less). However, the NTPF have further clarified that in some specific instances these hospitals may provide IPDC care for children, for example if the child does not suit the use of a child's bed, or if a child requires multi complex treatment and intensive care. On the most recent IPDC and GI Scope waiting lists, for the hospitals referenced by the Deputy, there were just 15 patients whose dates of birth indicate that they are less than 16 years of age.

On the most recent Outpatient list, for the same hospitals, there were 1,248 patients whose dates of birth indicate that they are less than 16 years of age (it is of note that this figure includes children listed on the Louth County Hospital Paediatric Outpatient Clinic).

Ombudsman for Children Reports

Questions (1173, 1174)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1173. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the reason child specific waiting lists have never been published for all healthcare services as per the recommendations of the report of the Ombudsman for Children on scoliosis; and if he will now publish same in full. [31937/19]

View answer

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1174. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the reason targets for maximum wait times for outpatient appointments have not been established as per the recommendations of the report of the Ombudsman for Children on scoliosis; and if he will now establish targets especially in relation to first appointments for scoliosis care. [31938/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 1173 and 1174 together.

The long-term strategy to develop sustainable scoliosis services from 2018 and into 2019 is a priority for my Department and for the HSE. The HSE advise that the impact of investment and the implementation of the Scoliosis 10 Point Action Plan is now delivering results with a consistent reduction in waiting times being recorded.

The Ombudsman for Children published his report, 'Waiting for Scoliosis Treatment; A Children's Rights Issue' in March 2017 and in August 2018 he published an update on that initial report  which welcomed actions taken to generate improvements in scoliosis services, such as the increase in the number of surgeries that take place, fewer children waiting over 12 months for surgery, increased capacity, and additional resources. The Ombudsman has met with me and my Department, as well as other stakeholders, in relation to this matter, and consequently has stated that there is a clear and absolute commitment from all involved to address the matter of scoliosis in the best interest of the children.

While the most recent update welcomed the improvements in scoliosis services, the Ombudsman's August update also pressed for the need for continued action to address waiting lists for initial assessment, access to diagnostics, and increased treatment activity. My Department continues to work with CHI to ensure that these issues are addressed, that activity levels continue to increase, and that waiting lists are reduced.

CHI published an update on the Scoliosis 10-Point Action Plan on 12th July 2019. This marks the second update to the plan, following an interim progress report issued in October 2018. The plan, which was co-designed by clinicians and managers in paediatric orthopaedics and with the three scoliosis advocacy groups-Scoliosis Advocacy Network Group (SANG), Scoliosis Support and Awareness Ireland, and Scoliosis Ireland - sets out how additional funding provided by the HSE is invested to support children and young people with scoliosis.

CHI advise that their priority for 2019 is to ensure that capacity is available to schedule patients that require surgery based on clinical priority. The addition of a new orthopaedic consultant post and the extension of the opening hours of theatre number eight to five days a week will continue to support the management of general orthopaedic waiting lists and enable consultants to better manage both spinal referral patients, and general orthopaedics, in order to reduce the number of patients waiting for a surgical procedure.

CHI further advise that a total of 30,293 children attended the paediatric orthopaedic outpatient departments at CHI and Cappagh National Orthopaedic Hospital (CNOH) in 2018. An additional 800 outpatient (OPD) appointments were given to patients in CHI at Crumlin in 2018 compared to 2017 which contributed to a 31% reduction in the overall orthopaedic outpatient waiting list. In addition, an outpatient initiative for long waiters carried out at CHI at Crumlin facilitated 443 appointments from the orthopaedic OPD waiting list.

When a child is referred for an initial spinal outpatient assessment they may not have a confirmed diagnosis of scoliosis. A definitive diagnosis of scoliosis is confirmed based on physical examination and radiological imaging. In CHI at Crumlin patients waiting for a spinal consultation make up approximately 1% of the overall orthopaedic waiting list.

In terms of child specific waiting lists and associated targets, Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are set for children's waiting times within the HSE's National Service Plan including targets for the percentage of children waiting less than 15 months for inpatient or daycase treatment. Progress against these KPIs is published in the HSE's monthly Performance Reports.

Improving timely access for patients to scheduled and unscheduled care is at the heart of Sláintecare. The Sláintecare Action Plan 2019 which was published by my Department, includes a specific workstream on Access and Waiting Lists. Sláintecare emphasises the need to invest in increased capacity while also shifting the balance of care from hospitals to community services for better health outcomes and a more sustainable health service. In addition, many of the other service reforms and enhancements included in Slaintecare will support timely access to care for patients in the coming years, including the application of waiting time targets and guarantees.

Hospital Waiting Lists

Questions (1175)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1175. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the reason children continue to wait over four months for scoliosis surgery in view of the fact that peer reviewed research shows that longer waits lead to reduced outcomes, more expensive surgeries, greater risks and higher blood loss for children; and the action he will take to ensure the safety of children that wait for scoliosis surgery. [31939/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I sincerely regret that children can experience a long waiting time for treatment for scoliosis, and I am conscious of the burden that this places on them and their families.  

Children’s Health Ireland (CHI) published the update on the Scoliosis 10-Point Action Plan on 12th July. This marks the second update to the plan, following an interim progress report which issued in October 2018. The plan, which was co-designed by clinicians and managers in paediatric orthopaedics and with the three scoliosis advocacy groups-Scoliosis Advocacy Network Group (SANG), Scoliosis Support and Awareness Ireland, and Scoliosis Ireland - sets out how additional funding provided by the HSE is invested to support children and young people with scoliosis.

The July publication provides an update on the progress made to date up against the 10 actions points and demonstrates the completion of four of the actions with a commitment to implementing the remaining six actions this year.

CHI advise that their priority for 2019 is to ensure that capacity is available to schedule patients that require surgery based on clinical priority. More broadly, waiting list figures for the end of June 2019 indicate the impact of the plan, with overall waiting list figures for scoliosis surgery at the end of June recording a 20% reduction since January 2018. The addition of a new orthopaedic consultant post and the extension of theatre opening hours will continue to support the management of general orthopaedic waiting lists and enable consultants to better manage both spinal referral patients, and general orthopaedics, in order to reduce the number of patients waiting for a surgical procedure.

In terms of activity, across CHI a total of 418 scoliosis-related surgical procedures were performed in 2018, compared with 371 in 2017 and 224 in 2016. To date this year, CHI have carried out 179 such procedures.

CHI further advise that as part of the Action Plan, additional Multidisciplinary Team staff appointments have been made across CHI increasing support to the service. In this regard, 88% of HSE funded posts, as per the 2019 National Service Plan, are in place, with the remaining posts at various stages of the recruitment process.

With regard to children with complex clinical needs, I have met regularly with the Senior Management of the HSE and the CEO of Children’s Health Ireland to discuss their short term and long-term plans to provide a better service for patients and their families. The CEO has provided assurances to me and advised that while there are a number of very complex and difficult cases at present, the Hospital will continue to provide all the support and services required to children and their patients. In situations where a child has multiple clinical complexities and medical conditions, a multidisciplinary team of specialist consultants always work in consultation with parents on the development and management of an appropriate treatment plan.

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

Questions (1176)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1176. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of children waiting on their first orthopaedic appointment with a consultant across the HSE, in hospitals, public and voluntary, by hospital and time waiting in tabular form. [31940/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Reducing waiting time for patients for hospital operations and procedures is a key priority for Government. In this regard, the Government is committed to improving waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures.

Budget 2019 announced that the Government has further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) increasing from €55 million in 2018 to €75 million in 2019. The joint Department of Health/HSE/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. The plan places a strong focus on ten high-volume Inpatient/Day Case procedures. When combined with HSE activity, it is projected that the NTPF will be in a position to offer treatment to all clinically suitable patients waiting more than 6 months for one of these high-volume procedures.

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 NTPF advise that over recent months they have placed a particular focus on engaging with hospital groups and individual hospitals to identify waiting list proposals. The NTPF welcomes proposals from all acute hospitals for initiatives to improve access for patients on waiting lists.

In addition, my Department is working with the HSE and NTPF, under the Access Plan, with the objective of developing medium-long term improvement initiatives for patient access to hospital procedures. This will include moving care to more appropriate settings and providing care at the lowest level of complexity.

The data requested by the Deputy is outlined in the following document.

Row Labels

 0-3 Months

 3-6 Months

 6-9 Months

 9-12 Months

12-15 Months

15-18 Months

18-24 Months

24+ Months

Small Volume TimeBands

Grand Total

Cappagh National Orthopaedic Hospital

27

35

14

16

7

99

Cavan General Hospital

5

5

CHI at Crumlin

533

347

251

246

181

122

151

1831

CHI at Tallaght

119

119

CHI at Temple St

400

258

233

218

229

149

180

114

1781

Croom Orthopaedic Hospital

109

53

40

41

38

24

59

74

438

Galway University Hospital

130

52

27

21

11

19

7

9

276

Kerry General Hospital

23

13

8

5

49

Letterkenny General Hospital

42

22

18

22

25

20

31

11

191

Mayo General Hospital

51

23

17

14

17

12

8

142

Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore

52

52

27

10

5

8

154

Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital Drogheda

57

23

29

11

14

7

141

Our Lady's Hospital Navan

6

6

Sligo Regional Hospital

55

31

18

41

21

17

27

8

218

Small Volume Hospitals

9

16

8

5

5

6

8

57

South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital

332

65

37

19

11

6

19

40

529

University Hospital Waterford

69

40

18

22

27

5

12

193

Grand Total

2019

1030

745

691

581

386

487

282

8

6229

Dental Services

Questions (1177)

Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin

Question:

1177. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Health further to Parliamentary Question No. 498 of 9 July 2019, if the Dental Council received a formal complaint from a member of the public in November 2015 claiming that a named, unqualified person had performed dental treatment on them; if it received such a complaint, if the matter was referred to An Garda Síochána; if it received such a complaint and did not refer the matter to An Garda Síochána, the reason for same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31942/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I am informed that the Dental Council decides, based on the facts of each case, whether to deal with disciplinary matters under the Dentists Act 1985 or to take other action, including referring matters to the Gardaí. The Dental Council takes allegations of illegal practice seriously and has indicated that it will take the appropriate steps where there is sufficient evidence.

The Dental Council advises that it would be inappropriate to reveal its decision making process regarding any individual case.

HSE Staff Recruitment

Questions (1178)

Frank O'Rourke

Question:

1178. Deputy Frank O'Rourke asked the Minister for Health his plans to fill the vacant posts at day hospitals in Celbridge and Kilcock, County Kildare in view of the fact that patients have been advised the facilities may be closing shortly due to staff shortages; if the proposed closures will be temporary; if so, the proposed duration of the closure; the alternative arrangements being put in place for patients; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31952/19]

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.

Medicinal Products

Questions (1179)

Louise O'Reilly

Question:

1179. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the specific drugs that have been considered to date by the rare diseases technology review committee of the HSE in tabular form; the outcomes of these decisions; the number of meetings that have taken place; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31956/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

The HSE has statutory responsibility for decisions on pricing and reimbursement of medicines under the community drug schemes, in accordance with the provisions of the Health (Pricing and Supply of Medical Goods) Act 2013; therefore, the matter has been referred to the HSE for reply to the Deputy.