Emergency Departments

Ceisteanna (274)

Thomas P. Broughan

Ceist:

274. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health if he will report on the latest planning details and timeframe for a new accident and emergency department at Beaumont Hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30264/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As the Health Service Executive is responsible for the delivery of healthcare infrastructure projects, I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly in relation to this matter.

Hospitals Building Programme

Ceisteanna (275)

Thomas P. Broughan

Ceist:

275. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health if capital budgets assigned to his Department under Project Ireland 2040 will include a new regional or university hospital for the north fringe of Dublin and Fingal; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30265/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The Sláintecare Action Plan for 2019 includes a commitment to develop criteria for new dedicated ambulatory elective-only hospital facilities. Detailed policy analysis to underpin this very significant health capital development is required to guide service and operational specifications for the new facilities.

Project Ireland 2040 and the National Development Plan are long-term plans which will provide the capital funding to develop dedicated ambulatory elective-only hospital facilities. However, we must ensure that we carefully plan the use of this capital funding to meet the populations health needs and achieve value for money.    

Project Ireland 2040 includes provision for new dedicated ambulatory elective-only hospital facilities will be introduced in Dublin, Galway and Cork. These facilities will provide high volume, low complexity procedures on a day and outpatient basis, together with a range of ambulatory diagnostic services. The high volume of demand for such services in these major urban centres is sufficient to justify the construction of dedicated ambulatory centres.

It is envisaged that these facilities will be sited adjacent to acute hospitals. The aim is to both increase capacity in the hospital system and provide a better separation of scheduled and unscheduled care, in line with the recommendations of the Sláintecare Report. They will provide increased, protected capacity for elective treatment and free up capacity in major hospitals to address higher complexity and emergency care.

Speech and Language Therapy Data

Ceisteanna (276)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

276. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of adults attending speech and language therapy supports in County Donegal; and the locations in the county these supports are provided. [30266/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Services for People with Disabilities

Ceisteanna (277)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

277. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the locations of feeding clinics across the State supporting persons with disabilities who have difficulties swallowing and are prone to choking due to their disability. [30267/19]

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.

HSE Correspondence

Ceisteanna (278)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

278. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health when he will provide a substantive response to correspondence calling for an independent review into the circumstances leading to the death of a person (details supplied) in November 2016. [30268/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

I have been advised by the HSE that a letter issued to the correspondent from the Saolta University Health Care Group on the 28 June, 2019 in relation to this matter.

Healthcare Policy

Ceisteanna (279, 280)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

279. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health when the results of the public consultation on geographical alignment of community healthcare organisations and hospital groups will be published. [30269/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

280. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health if a geographical outline of community healthcare networks, community healthcare organisations and hospital groups will be provided across the State; and the way in which they align with and interact with each other. [30270/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 279 and 280 together.

A clear governance and accountability framework was identified as a key building block of Sláintecare by the Committee on the Future of Healthcare. As part of its recommendations in this area, the Committee called for the HSE to become a more strategic and patient-focused ‘national centre’ carrying out national level functions, and the establishment of regional bodies with responsibility for the planning and delivery of integrated care at a regional level. As the Deputy will be aware, 9 Community Healthcare Organisations (CHOs) and 6 Hospital Groups are in place on an administrative basis to plan and deliver community and acute care services respectively. While significant progress has been made by these structures, there is broad consensus that having separate and un-aligned structures for acute and community care impedes the development of a more integrated health service underpinned by population based planning, as envisaged under the Sláintecare programme. In this regard, the Sláintecare report recommended that “further analysis and consultation should be undertaken to identify how alignment can best be achieved with minimal disruption to key structures including at community healthcare network level”. As a first step in this process, my Department undertook a public consultation regarding the geographical alignment of CHOs and Hospital Groups in 2018. In addition, my Department has carried out further detailed analysis work to determine the optimal geographical alignment of CHOs, CHNs and Hospital Groups which can be achieved with minimal disruption, and which will ultimately be the geographical areas of the proposed new regional health bodies. My Department is finalising proposals in this regard, and I hope to bring these proposals to Government shortly, together with the findings of the public consultation, which I expect to be published shortly thereafter.

In parallel, work is progressing in my Department on the development of detailed policy proposals on reconfiguration of the HSE, including the establishment of regional health bodies. This will take into account international experience of regional delivery of healthcare along with a comprehensive engagement process with stakeholders in the Irish health system.

Alcohol Pricing

Ceisteanna (281)

Seán Haughey

Ceist:

281. Deputy Seán Haughey asked the Minister for Health his plans to commence the provisions of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 relating to minimum alcohol pricing; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30271/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The 2013 Government Decision which approved a minimum pricing regime envisaged its introduction in Northern Ireland and in this jurisdiction simultaneously. It is my intention to seek a revised Government Decision to implement minimum unit pricing of alcohol here as soon as possible in order to address the very significant health harms and financial costs of the way alcohol is currently consumed here.

Health Services Staff Recruitment

Ceisteanna (282)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

282. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the reason two permanent senior management administrative posts (details supplied) are being prioritised to be filled while front-line posts have ceased. [30272/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

Home Help Service Data

Ceisteanna (283)

Bobby Aylward

Ceist:

283. Deputy Bobby Aylward asked the Minister for Health the ratio of co-ordinators and HCSA leads to general staff and HCSA workers within the home help sector for the nine Health Service Executive CHO areas; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30274/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy on this matter.

Non-Consultant Hospital Doctors

Ceisteanna (284)

Michael Harty

Ceist:

284. Deputy Michael Harty asked the Minister for Health if the ENT department at University Hospital Limerick has lost its accreditation for training of non-consultant doctors in the speciality of ENT; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30276/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service issue, I have asked the HSE to reply to you directly.