Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Ceisteanna (1603)

Richard Boyd Barrett


1603. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Health the estimated full year cost of implementing each of the measures recommended in the Sláintecare report. [33541/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The Sláintecare report details the vision of the Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Healthcare. In their report, the Committee estimated the cost of the series of reforms to expand eligibility, to expand the health system to deliver better access to primary care, general practice and to public hospital care for all, and for the phasing out of private care in public hospitals, alongside the removal or reduction of significant proportion of out of pocket payments from households.  This was estimated at €2.8 billion for full delivery of these reforms within 10 years. In addition, the Committee recommended that once-off transitional funding of €3 billion be provided to implement system change, with funding identified for capital projects, new structures, new equipment, additional staff training capacity and new services. The costing of these reforms is dependant on many key factors such as the phasing of implementation, ongoing and future negotiations with key stakeholders in the health system, demographic change, and inflation within the economy.

The Action Plan details the outputs that are to be delivered over 2019, with progress to be measured and reported on a biannual basis.

All the actions committed to be delivered in 2019 are intended to be achieved from the existing agreed expenditure estimates for 2019. The actions included in the Sláintecare Action Plan are underpinned by the commitments in the HSE's National Service Plan, which provides detailed breakdowns of 2019 deliverables, alongside costings of these deliverables. 

I can confirm that within Programme 4.4, the programme that will manage the Sláintecare budget, a ring-fenced amount of €20 million has been set aside for the establishment of an Integration Fund in 2019. The Integration Fund will focus on supporting the development of existing and new best practice projects that are capable of being scaled nationally, and which promote the engagement and empowerment of citizens in the care of their own health, scale and share examples of best practice and processes for chronic disease management and care of older people and encourage innovations in the shift of care to the community or provide hospital avoidance measures. This Fund was launched on March 22nd, 2019 and a significant number of project submissions with a focus on community care and integration of care across all health and social care settings have been received. The successful submissions are due to be announced shortly.