Friday, 6 September 2019

Questions (813)

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

813. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Health if he will address a matter regarding cancer drugs (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [34803/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

Health insurance providers operate in a competitive market and are free to design products with a range of differing benefits, providing they comply with minimum benefit regulations. As Minister for Health I have no role in the commercial decisions of any health insurer and am therefore not in a position to determine or direct insurers to provide cover for any particular procedure or service, or indeed how that cover is provided, other than those outlined in the regulations.

Access to the drug the Deputy names is not provided for under minimum benefit regulations. Any insurer is free to make a commercial decision to provide for a differing level of service so long as it does not go below what is provided for in minimum benefit regulations.

It should be noted that in the public setting, the HSE at all times ensures that the systems that it has in place are designed to provide equitable access to all medicines across all therapeutic areas, cancer and non-cancer, from the resources provided to it.