Thursday, 24 January 2019

Ceisteanna (195)

Lisa Chambers

Ceist:

195. Deputy Lisa Chambers asked the Minister for Health the number of meetings he has attended since the beginning of September 2018 with his officials to discuss and prepare for Brexit; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3599/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As part of a whole of Government response to Brexit, I and my Department are working to ensure a comprehensive and coordinated set of preparations to ensure continuity of health services post-Brexit. This work involves the Department and the HSE and other agencies in engaging in intensive Brexit preparedness and contingency planning.

A key consideration will be to ensure that insofar as possible there is minimum disruption to health services and that essential services are maintained on a cross-Border, all-island and Ireland-UK basis insofar as possible.

Brexit is a priority issue both for me and officials in my Department. The Management Board considers the issue on a regular basis. It is a regular item for discussion with the Secretary General, with other senior officials and at Ministerial Management Board meetings. My engagements can range from structured meetings to informal briefings. 

This covers, among other matters the work of the various Departmental Brexit working groups including the Secretary General Heads of Agencies Group and the weekly Health Sector Operations Team on Brexit. I am also briefed on the Department's participation in the inter-departmental work on Brexit being led by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Department of the Taoiseach. I have also, with my Department engaged on Brexit issues at EU level and bilaterally with the UK.