Wednesday, 20 January 2021

Questions (608)

Brian Stanley

Question:

608. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Health if he will clarify the position of essential workers providing massage therapy for pain management; and if they can operate under the current Covid-19 lockdown. [2688/21]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

As you aware, Ireland is at level 5 of the Government's medium-term strategy Resilience and Recovery 2020-2021: Plan for Living with COVID-19. This 5-level framework sets out what is permitted for social or family gatherings, work and public transport, bars, hotels and restaurants, exercise activities and religious services, at that moment in time.

The public health measures recognise the need to reduce congregation and interactions between people to reduce the transmission of Covid-19. The number of people allowed to gather in different scenarios in the plan is based on a review of international practice and the judgment of public health experts. It seeks to balance the risks of different types of gatherings against the desire to allow normal activities to proceed in so far as possible. The measures in place for each level reflect the prevailing disease situation and recognise that we can and must prioritise some activities over others.

At level 5, all non-essential services must remain closed. Information in relation to the current public health measures in relation to essential services at level 5 is available at:- https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/c9158-essential-services/

The Deputy may wish to note that essential therapy services are those that are provided by a member of a designated profession within the meaning of section 3 of the Health and Social Care Professionals Act 2005 (No. 27 of 2005). Essential services for Human Health at Level 5 can be viewed at:- https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/c9158-essential-services/#human-health-and-social-work-activities

The Health Act 1947 (Section 31A - Temporary Restrictions) (COVID-19) (NO. 10) Regulations 2020 Regulation (S.I. 701 of 2020), sets out the relevant businesses or services under the current public health measures. Statutory Instruments related to the Covid-19 pandemic are available here: https://www.gov.ie/en/collection/1f150-view-statutory-instruments-related-to-the-covid-19-pandemic/