Written Answers. - Proposed Legislation.

Denis Naughten

Ceist:

1147 Mr. Naughten asked the Minister for Health and Children the planned legislation in his Department; the timescale for publishing the legislation; the status of such legislation; the changes proposed by it; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16810/02]

Enda Kenny

Ceist:

1194 Mr. Kenny asked the Minister for Health and Children his Department's legislative programme for the remainder of 2002; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14398/02]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 1147 and 1194 together.

My Department's proposed legislative programme for the remainder of 2002 and beyond is set out in the following schedule:

Bills expected to be Published in 2002.

Title

Purpose

1.Opticians (Amendment) Bill.

To amend the provision of the Opticians Act, 1956.

2.Health and Social Care Professionals Bill.

To provide for the statutory registration of 14 health and social care professions.

Title

Purpose

3.Health Insurance (Amendment) Bill.

To amend and extend the provisions of the Health Insurance Acts 1994 and 2001.

In the case of the Opticians (Amendment) Bill and the Health and Social Care Professionals Bill, the draft heads of the Bills have been approved by the Government and they are currently being drafted by parliamentary counsel. In relation to the Health Insurance (Amendment) Bill, it is expected that heads of the Bill will shortly be submitted to Government and, subject to the Government's approval, to the parliamentary counsel for drafting. Progress on the Bills, however, is subject to the exigencies and priorities within the parliamentary counsel's office.
Bills expected to be published in 2003.1. Adoption Information, Post Adoptions Contact and Associated Issues Bill – To address the information rights and search and re-union services for children adopted and children raised in care.
2. Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in respect of Intercountry Adoption Bill – To provide for the ratification of the Hague Convention of 1992 on the protection of children and international co-operation in respect of inter country adoption.
3. Irish Medicines Board (Amendment) Bill – To transfer the functions of competent authority from the Department to the IMB for the Misuse of Drugs Act and for medical devices.
4. Nurses Bill – To amend the Nurses Act, 1985.
5. Voluntary Health Insurance Board (Corporate Status) Bill – To address the corporate status of the VHI in accordance with the White Paper on Health Insurance (1999).
6. Pharmacy Bill – To update and consolidate the Pharmacy Acts, 1875-1977.
7. Health (Complaints) Bill – To provide a statutory framework for the handling of complaints within the health services.
In the case of the Adoption Information, Post Adoptions Contact and Associated Issues Bill, the heads of the Bill have been approved by the Government and it is currently with the parliamentary counsel for drafting. In relation to the remaining proposals, draft heads of the Bills are currently being prepared within my Department and are expected to be submitted to Government for approval by the end of this year or early in 2003. In addition to the foregoing, my Department, in line with the second goal of the national health strategy, is drawing up legislative proposals to provide a clear statutory framework in relation to eligibility for health and personal social services.
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