Autism Support Services

Ceisteanna (114)

Jan O'Sullivan

Ceist:

114. Deputy Jan O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Health if the HSE has plans to provide a counselling and advice service for families, in particular for the siblings of children diagnosed with autism in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14583/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

Medical Card Applications

Ceisteanna (115)

Willie Penrose

Ceist:

115. Deputy Willie Penrose asked the Minister for Health if a person (details supplied) has had a medical card reissued; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14584/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter, it has been referred to the Health Service Executive for attention and direct reply to the Deputy

Services for People with Disabilities

Ceisteanna (116)

Niamh Smyth

Ceist:

116. Deputy Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Health the alternative local supports being put in place regarding a centre (details supplied); the status of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14585/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

The Programme for Partnership Government states that the Government wishes to provide more accessible respite care to facilitate full support for people with a disability.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

Ceisteanna (117)

Seán Fleming

Ceist:

117. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Health the status of the medical treatment available here or abroad for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14592/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As Minister for Health, I requested Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) to draft a report on the use of Uro-Gynaecological Mesh in the surgical treatment of stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP) in women. The report covers the clinical and technical issues involved in ensuring both:

the safe and effective provision of mesh procedures in urogynaecology and

an appropriate response to women who suffer complications as a result of undergoing such procedures.

This report has been completed and was published on the Department of Health website on 21 November 2018.

The Report identifies that for many women, surgical procedures using synthetic mesh devices have provided a more effective and less invasive form of treatment than traditional SUI and POP procedures. However, mesh devices are associated with significant and severe complications in a minority of women. These are of concern given the difficulties of mesh implant removal.

The Report makes 19 recommendations including:

- the development of patient information and informed consent materials;

- surgical professional training and multidisciplinary expertise in units carrying out mesh procedures;

- the development of clinical guidance;

- the development of information systems to monitor the ongoing use of mesh devices;

- ensuring the reporting of mesh related complications; and

- ensuring timely, appropriate and accessible care pathways for the management of women with complications.

In advance of the report’s completion, the HSE was requested in May 2018 to begin work immediately on the development of national standardised patient information and informed consent materials and the clarification and development of treatment pathways and appropriate referral services for women suffering serious complications. The HSE was also asked by the Chief Medical Officer on 24 July to pause all mesh procedures where clinically safe to do so, until a number of key recommendations are implemented.

A Synthetic Mesh Devices Advisory Group has been convened by the HSE, to advise on and progress all of the recommendations. I am informed that an ongoing work programme for the development of appropriate patient information resources and consent materials, and the clarification and development of treatment pathways and appropriate referral services for women suffering from mesh-related complications is being progressed through this Group. The work being progressed by the HSE will include identifying the appropriate specialist clinical expertise and facilities required at hospital group level and nationally to provide comprehensive aftercare services. Pending the completion of this, the HSE will also examine the need to look at sourcing services from abroad to address any immediate shortfalls identified, either through utilisation of the treatment abroad scheme or by commissioning services from abroad.

The HSE has advised that many women have already engaged with this pathway system and have attended centres for second opinion and follow up appointments. The HSE has published a dedicated webpage about vaginal mesh implants, including contact information for women suffering complications, which I hope is a useful resource. This can be found at:

hse.ie/eng/about/who/acute-hospitals-division/woman-infants/vaginal-mesh-implants/vaginal-mesh-implants.html

The Secretary General of my Department wrote to the HSE on November 27 2018 to request that it prepare a detailed Implementation Plan for the complete set of recommendations set out in the CMO’s Report, to be approved by the Leadership Team in the HSE and published on the HSE website within three months of receipt of the report, or sooner if completed. It was also requested that a copy of the Implementation Plan, together with an interim report on the implementation of those recommendations on which work has already commenced, should be submitted to the Department at the time of publication of the Implementation Plan.

I am informed that the HSE has advised that the final version of the Implementation Plan will be published on its website and submitted to my Department in coming weeks.

Nursing Homes Support Scheme Review

Ceisteanna (118)

Seán Fleming

Ceist:

118. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Health when new arrangements will be introduced and if legislation is required regarding changes to the rules for the fair deal scheme in order to introduce a three-year cap on the inclusion of productive assets in the assessment of or as part of the scheme in view of the fact that the matter is ongoing for some time; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14593/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The proposed policy change to the Nursing Homes Support Scheme (NHSS), to cap contributions based on farm assets at 3 years where a family successor commits to working the productive asset, has been approved by Government. My Department is working on the development of draft Heads of Bill while considering a number of complex ancillary policy and operational matters which may need to be addressed in the proposed legislation.

It is intended that this proposed policy change, the 3 year cap, will be extended to eligible existing participants in long term residential care so that they are not disadvantaged, but that there would be no retrospective recoupment of contributions for those who have paid contributions over and above the 3 year period.

A draft General Scheme of a Bill is currently with legal advisers for advice and legal quality control review. As the Deputy is aware, there is presently a focus on matters relating to Brexit, including planning and preparing in a legal and legislative context. Unfortunately, this is having some impact on progressing the Heads of Bill for the NHSS at this time. However, subject to legal advice, I expect to bring the heads of bill to Government at the earliest opportunity. The changes to the Scheme will come into effect in 2019 subject to the legislative process.

Autism Support Services

Ceisteanna (119)

Jan O'Sullivan

Ceist:

119. Deputy Jan O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Health the services available for children diagnosed with autism in County Kerry; if these services are continuous for each child in view of the fact that children in the county are only receiving a small number of appointments to the services; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14597/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality of opportunity and improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

As the Deputy's question relates to service matters, I have arranged for the question to be referred to the Health Service Executive (HSE) for direct reply to the Deputy.

Hospital Appointments Status

Ceisteanna (120)

Peter Burke

Ceist:

120. Deputy Peter Burke asked the Minister for Health the status of an appointment for a person (details supplied). [14598/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.

The National Waiting List Management Policy, a standardised approach to managing scheduled care treatment for in-patient, day case and planned procedures, since January 2014, has been developed to ensure that all administrative, managerial and clinical staff follow an agreed national minimum standard for the management and administration of waiting lists for scheduled care. This policy, which has been adopted by the HSE, sets out the processes that hospitals are to implement to manage waiting lists.

In relation to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Hospital Appointments Delays

Ceisteanna (121)

Maurice Quinlivan

Ceist:

121. Deputy Maurice Quinlivan asked the Minister for Health the reason for the delay in receiving a hospital appointment for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14599/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.

The National Waiting List Management Policy, a standardised approach to managing scheduled care treatment for in-patient, day case and planned procedures, since January 2014, has been developed to ensure that all administrative, managerial and clinical staff follow an agreed national minimum standard for the management and administration of waiting lists for scheduled care. This policy, which has been adopted by the HSE, sets out the processes that hospitals are to implement to manage waiting lists.

In relation to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

HSE Investigations

Ceisteanna (122, 123, 124, 125)

Clare Daly

Ceist:

122. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health the named officers within the HSE national office of nursing and midwifery who set in train the suspension of a person (details supplied) in 2014; and the authority of which named officer under which the was decision taken. [14611/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Clare Daly

Ceist:

123. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health the information produced relating to the practice of a person (details supplied); and the person or body that decided to underwrite and justify the decision to suspend in the person in 2014. [14612/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Clare Daly

Ceist:

124. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health the named officers in the HSE national office of nursing and midwifery who decided to pursue a systems analysis of the home birth records of a person (details supplied); the authority under which the decision to undertake a systems analysis was made; if the systems analysis was completed; if so, the location of the records of findings from the systems analysis; and if a copy of same will be provided. [14613/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Clare Daly

Ceist:

125. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health the cost to the HSE of the legal proceedings related to the case of a person (details supplied). [14614/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 122 to 125, inclusive, together.

As these questions refer to operational matters, they has been referred to the HSE for attention and direct reply to the Deputy.

National Maternity Strategy Implementation

Ceisteanna (126)

Clare Daly

Ceist:

126. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health the number of times, in light of the recommendations of the national maternity strategy, that the steering group for the implementation of the model of care has met since it was established. [14615/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Implementation of the National Maternity Strategy - Creating A Better Future Together 2016 - 2026 - is being led by the HSE National Women & Infants Health Programme. I have therefore asked the HSE to reply to your query directly.

National Maternity Strategy Implementation

Ceisteanna (127)

Clare Daly

Ceist:

127. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health the major outputs of the steering group for the implementation of the model of care to date. [14616/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Implementation of the National Maternity Strategy - Creating A Better Future Together 2016 - 2026 - is being led by the HSE National Women & Infants Health Programme. I have therefore asked the HSE to reply to your query directly.

National Maternity Strategy Implementation

Ceisteanna (128)

Clare Daly

Ceist:

128. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health when the building work will commence on the first of the alongside birthing centres, which were a core recommendation for the supported care pathway of the national maternity strategy in view of the fact that there are only two midwife-led centres in the 19 maternity units. [14617/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Ireland's first Alongside Birth Unit, since the launch of Strategy, was opened in University Maternity Hospital Limerick in June last year. The rollout of the Supported Care Pathway is bringing increased choice to the women of this country and will make a real difference to how women and families experience maternity services here.

National Maternity Strategy Implementation

Ceisteanna (129)

Clare Daly

Ceist:

129. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health when the HSE national office of nursing and midwifery will update its protocols on home birth to reflect the international evidence base included in the guideline planning to birth at home in Northern Ireland 2018. [14618/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this question refers to an operational matter, it has been referred to the HSE for attention and direct reply to the Deputy.

Hospitals Data

Ceisteanna (130)

Róisín Shortall

Ceist:

130. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Health the proportion of persons classified as urgent referrals for colonoscopies being seen within the four-week target; the breakdown of performance against this target by hospital in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14623/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The information requested by the Deputy is currently being collated by officials in my Department and will be provided to the Deputy directly as soon as it becomes available.

Medical Card Applications

Ceisteanna (131)

Willie Penrose

Ceist:

131. Deputy Willie Penrose asked the Minister for Health if a person (details supplied) has had a medical card reissued; the status of the medical card; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14627/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter it has been referred to the Health Service Executive for direct reply to the Deputy.