Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Questions (333)

Michael McGrath


333. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Health his plans to give adults with a disability a legal right to services; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [48996/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The Health Act 1970 (as amended) provides that the Health Service Executive (HSE) makes a range of services available to persons ordinarily resident in the State on a full or limited eligibility basis. In addition, Section 7 of the Health Act 2004 provides that the object of the Executive is to use the resources available to it in the most beneficial, effective and efficient manner to improve, promote and protect the health and welfare of the public.

Within this legislative framework, a wide range of disability services are provided to those with physical, sensory, intellectual disability and autism. Disability services focus on supporting and enabling people with disabilities to maximise their full potential, living ordinary lives in ordinary places, as independently as possible. Disability services strive to ensure the voices of service users and their families are heard, and are fully involved in planning and improving services to meet their needs.

The overarching principle governing the planning and delivery of health services and supports for adults and children with disabilities is that they should be integrated, as much as possible, with services and supports for the rest of the population. The Government’s agenda in this regard is clearly set out in the current National Disability Inclusion Strategy (NDIS) which is based on a non-condition specific approach to the delivery of public services and the mainstreaming agenda.

I can confirm that the overall Budget for health funded specialist disability services in 2020 is in excess of €2 billion. This is an increase of over €490 million since 2016. The increased level of funding in 2020 will enable the Health Services to continue to provide a broad range of services aimed at improving the quality of life of people with disabilities and their families. The policy is to provide person centred services based on need rather than diagnosis.

Questions Nos. 334 and 335 answered with Question No. 284.