Hospitals Data

Ceisteanna (1080, 1081)

Pearse Doherty

Ceist:

1080. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Health the number of inpatient surgical procedures cancelled at Letterkenny University Hospital in each of the years 2014 to 2018 and to date in 2019; the number of outpatient procedures cancelled at the hospital during the period; if the cancellation was at the request of the patient or the hospital authorities in each case in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31574/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Pearse Doherty

Ceist:

1081. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Health the number of inpatient surgical procedures cancelled at Sligo University Hospital in each of the years 2014 to 2018 and to date in 2019; the number of outpatient procedures cancelled at the hospital during the period; if the cancellation was at the request of the patient or the hospital authorities in each case in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31575/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 1080 and 1081 together.

Maintaining scheduled care access for all patients is a key priority for hospitals. I fully acknowledge the distress and inconvenience for patients and their families when elective procedures are cancelled, particularly for clinically urgent procedures.

While every effort is made to avoid cancellation or postponement of planned procedures, the HSE advise that planned procedures and operations can be postponed or cancelled for a variety of reasons including capacity issues due to increased scheduled and unscheduled care demand, medical reasons, and patient choice.

In relation to the specific questions raised by the Deputy, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to reply to the Deputy directly.

Speech and Language Therapy Waiting Lists

Ceisteanna (1082)

Pearse Doherty

Ceist:

1082. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Health the number of persons waiting to receive an initial appointment for speech and language therapy services by county; the number waiting zero to three, three to six, six to nine, nine to 12, 12 to 15 and greater than 15 months, respectively, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31576/19]

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.

Hospital Appointments Status

Ceisteanna (1083)

Peter Burke

Ceist:

1083. Deputy Peter Burke asked the Minister for Health the status of an appointment for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31579/19]

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.

Home Help Service Provision

Ceisteanna (1084)

Brian Stanley

Ceist:

1084. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Health when an application for support services will be approved and provided for a person (details supplied). [31581/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Palliative Care Services Provision

Ceisteanna (1085)

Mary Butler

Ceist:

1085. Deputy Mary Butler asked the Minister for Health when the new palliative care unit at University Hospital Waterford will be operational; when it will take its first patients; if staff will be utilised from existing staffing levels; if funding will be allocated for additional staff; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31582/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond to you directly as soon as possible.

Legislative Measures

Ceisteanna (1086)

Robert Troy

Ceist:

1086. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Health the status of the health (transport support) Bill. [31588/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The Deputy will be familiar with the background to the closure of both the Mobility Allowance and Motorised Transport Grant schemes in 2013.

With regard to the proposals for a new Health (Transport Support) Bill, the Deputy may be aware that my colleague, the Minister for Health and I, brought a Memorandum to Government on proposals for a new Transport Support Payment Scheme. Following consideration of the matter, it was decided to withdraw the Memorandum from the Cabinet Agenda at that time. I intend to revert to Government in due course with revised proposals to reflect the discussions at that Cabinet meeting and further discussions between myself and Minister Harris, on the best way to progress the Transport Scheme.

It is important to note that the Disabled Drivers and Disabled Passengers scheme, operated by the Revenue Commissioners, remains in place. This scheme provides VRT and VAT relief, an exemption from road tax and a fuel grant to drivers and passengers with a disability, who qualify under the relevant criteria set out in governing regulations made by the Minister for Finance. Specifically adapted vehicles driven by persons with a disability are also exempt from payment of tolls on national roads and toll bridges. Transport Infrastructure Ireland has responsibility for this particular scheme.

There are improvements in access to a range of transport support schemes available to persons with disabilities in the State and on-going work is being carried out by Government Departments, agencies and transport providers to further improve access to public transport services. Under the National Disability Inclusion Strategy, the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport has responsibility for the continued development of accessibility and availability of public transport for people with a disability.

The Deputy may wish to note that my colleague the Minister for Rural and Community Development recently announced CLÁR funding of €890,632 to 20 voluntary community organisations. This funding will support the purchase and/or fit out of vehicles to provide transport for people in rural areas with mobility issues. It will support voluntary organisations that provide:-

- transport for people with significant mobility issues, including those requiring specialised wheelchair accessible vehicles, to day-care or other medical, therapeutic or respite services; or

- transport to/from designated cancer treatment hospitals/centres under the National Cancer Care Programme.

National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics

Ceisteanna (1087)

Alan Kelly

Ceist:

1087. Deputy Alan Kelly asked the Minister for Health if health technology assessments or rapid review assessments for drug treatments have been delayed by the National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics due to insufficient organisational resources to date in 2019; if so, the assessments affected in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31613/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics (NCPE) was established in 1998 and conducts the health technology assessment (HTA) of pharmaceutical products for the Health Service Executive.

The NCPE's workload has increased significantly, from less than five assessments per year in 2007 to eighty assessments per year in 2017. In addition, the complexity of individual assessments has increased greatly.

A 2017 Grant Thornton review of the NCPE indicated that it was understaffed, at 8.5 whole time equivalents, and that an additional 9 staff, including senior pharmacists, HTA assessors and statisticians, would be required to meet the additional workload.

I allocated an additional €750,000 to the NCPE in 2018 to support the recruitment of the additional staff, which has been underway since then.

The NCPE has advised that no rapid review assessments have been delayed in 2019. These assessments account for approximately 2/3 of the 70-80 assessments carried out each year.

In the first quarter of this year,11 full HTA submissions (which is the highest number ever) was received by the NCPE. The NCPE has advised that six full Health Technology Assessments (HTA) have been delayed:

1. Burosumab (Crysvita) for x-linked hypophosphataemia

2. Liposomal daunorubicin (Vyxeos) for Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML)

3. Lutetium Oxodotreotide (Lutathera) for Neuroendocrine tumours

4. Nivilumab + Ipilimumab for Renal Cell Carcinoma

5. Patisiran (Onpattro) for Amyloidosis

6. Pembrolizumab for adjuvant melanoma

The NCPE have confirmed that they will commence the assessment of three of these products ( items number 2, 3 and 4 above) within the next 2 weeks. By the 1st August 2019 just 3 products ( items 1, 5 and 6 above) will be waiting to start the assessment process.

The NCPE have 20.5 whole time equivalents but 4 of those positions are currently vacant. The NCPE have confirmed that they are in the process of filling these 4 positions which will address these delay to the assessment process.

Disease Management

Ceisteanna (1088)

Alan Kelly

Ceist:

1088. Deputy Alan Kelly asked the Minister for Health the number of new persons treated under the national hepatitis C treatment programme to date in 2019; his views on whether the number is sufficient to achieve the target of elimination by 2026; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31614/19]

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 HSE for direct reply to the Deputy.

Disease Management

Ceisteanna (1089)

Alan Kelly

Ceist:

1089. Deputy Alan Kelly asked the Minister for Health the way in which the funding for the national hepatitis C treatment programme was used in 2018 and to date in 2019; the volume spent on patient finding activities; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31615/19]

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 HSE for direct reply to the Deputy.

Primary Care Strategy Roll-out

Ceisteanna (1090)

Margaret Murphy O'Mahony

Ceist:

1090. Deputy Margaret Murphy O'Mahony asked the Minister for Health the status of plans to roll out a multidisciplinary team approach for rheumatology care at primary care level by CHO; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31618/19]

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.

Legislative Reviews

Ceisteanna (1091)

Catherine Connolly

Ceist:

1091. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Health the number of reviews carried out by his Department pursuant to Standing Order 164A of Dáil Éireann; the pieces of legislation to which each review refers; the number and title of each piece of legislation in respect of which a review pursuant to Standing Order 164A has not been undertaken; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31632/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The information requested is currently being compiled by my Department and will be provided to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Disability Services Funding

Ceisteanna (1092)

Michael Lowry

Ceist:

1092. Deputy Michael Lowry asked the Minister for Health if an investment of €18 million will be included in budget 2020 towards community supports for persons with dementia as per a submission (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31639/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The aim of the National Dementia Strategy, which was published in December 2014 and is being implemented by the National Dementia Office, is to improve care, services and supports for people with dementia.

The HSE currently provides approximately €9 million per annum for intensive home care packages, including €7.9 million for dementia-specific packages. Since the packages were introduced at the end of 2014, 443 dementia-specific intensive homecare packages have been delivered, with 201 active at the end of March 2019.

A total of €426 million has been allocated for home support services in 2019, which also benefit people with dementia. It is expected that over 17.9 million home support hours will be delivered to over 53,000 people this year.

The HSE provides in the region of €12 million in annual funding to a range of organisations who deliver dementia-specific respite, home care, day care, cognitive stimulation therapy, social clubs and supports for family carers around the country.

In addition, the HSE provides €400,000 per annum in support for the Dementia Adviser Service which spans 12 counties and is operated by the Alzheimer Society of Ireland. This funding supports 7 of the 9 dementia adviser posts.

The level of funding available for the Department of Health in 2020 and the quantum of services to be provided by the HSE, including measures to improve community supports for people with dementia, will be considered as part of the national Estimates and budgetary process and National Service Planning.

Home Help Service Provision

Ceisteanna (1093)

Brian Stanley

Ceist:

1093. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Health if it is the policy of the HSE and the Minister that home helps will no longer be rostered for weekend cover in County Laois and instead be replaced by private agency staff; and if this has become an established practice in other counties. [31646/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Medical Card Applications Data

Ceisteanna (1094)

Seán Fleming

Ceist:

1094. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Health the number of applications for medical cards that have been cancelled in cases in which the HSE is of the view the information requested was not submitted by the applicant within a reasonable time period; the number in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31649/19]

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.

Hospital Appointments Status

Ceisteanna (1095)

Pat Deering

Ceist:

1095. Deputy Pat Deering asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) in County Carlow will be seen in University Hospital Waterford following a report. [31704/19]

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.

Home Care Packages Data

Ceisteanna (1096)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1096. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health further to Parliamentary Question No. 483 of 18 June 2019, the length of time those on the home support waiting list have been on same (details supplied). [31718/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond directly to the Deputy as soon as possible.

Prescriptions Charges

Ceisteanna (1097)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1097. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the amount collected in prescription charges for medical card prescriptions in each of the years 2014 to 2018; and the projected amount for 2019. [31719/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Under the Health (Pricing and Supply of Medical Goods) Act 2013, the HSE has statutory responsibility for the administration of the community drug schemes; therefore, the matter has been referred to the HSE for attention and direct reply to the Deputy.

Hospitals Discharges

Ceisteanna (1098)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1098. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of elective inpatient discharges in each public and voluntary hospital in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, in tabular form. [31720/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Reducing waiting time for patients for hospital operations and procedures is a key priority for Government. Last year saw considerable improvement in the number of patients waiting for procedures. As a result of increased activity and the ongoing collaboration between the HSE and the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF), the number of patients waiting for an Inpatient or Day case procedure fell to 70,204 in December 2018, from a peak of 86,100 in July 2017. This represents a reduction of over 18% in the overall number of patients waiting for a procedure. The number of patients waiting more than 3 months fell by more than 17,700, or 31% in the same period from July 2017 to the end of December 2018.

Budget 2019 announced that the Government had further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the NTPF increasing from €55 million in 2018 to €75 million in 2019. The joint Department of Health, HSE, and NTPF Scheduled Care Access Plan 2019 was published in March. Under the Plan the HSE, in line with the National Service Plan, will deliver 1.155 million elective inpatient and day case discharges at a value of €1.4 billion in 2019 and the NTPF will arrange 25,000 hospital operations and procedures at a value of €58 million.

In relation to the specific matter raised, I have asked the HSE to respond directly to the Deputy.

General Practitioner Data

Ceisteanna (1099)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1099. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of general practitioner vacancies by LHO in tabular form. [31721/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this question relates to a service matter, I have arranged for it to be referred to the Health Service Executive for direct reply to the Deputy.

Hospital Charges

Ceisteanna (1100)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1100. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the amount of revenue raised from private patients in public and voluntary hospitals in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, in tabular form [31722/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Revenue raised from private patients in public and voluntary hospitals is recorded as maintenance charge income by the HSE. The maintenance charge income from hospitals reported for 2016, 2017, 2018 and year to date 2019 is provided below.

Maintenance charge income for Hospitals

€m

Jan-Dec'16

626.3

Jan-Dec'17

570.8

Jan-Dec'18

520.6

Jan-May'19 (draft)

213.1

HSE Agency Staff Expenditure

Ceisteanna (1101)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1101. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the amount the HSE spent on agency staff in each month to date in 2019, by occupation, hospital and community healthcare organisation in tabular form; the equivalent figures for each month in 2018; and the proportion of the anticipated agency staff expenditure of the HSE for 2019 that has been incurred to date [31723/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Hospital Beds Closures

Ceisteanna (1102)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1102. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of beds and wards in each public and voluntary acute hospital that were closed on 1 July 2019, in tabular form. [31724/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

According to provisional data provided by the HSE Acute Business Information Unit, there were on average 10,961 inpatient beds and 2,247 day case beds/places available nationally between January and June 2019.

Information relating to closed beds is collated at a particular date in time. The number of beds closed can fluctuate greatly from day to day for a variety of reasons, including on-going refurbishment, maintenance work, and infection control measures.

In relation to the particular data requested, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Hospitals Discharges

Ceisteanna (1103)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1103. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of delayed discharges in hospitals in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, in tabular form. [31725/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.

Hospital Beds Data

Ceisteanna (1104)

Louise O'Reilly

Ceist:

1104. Deputy Louise O'Reilly asked the Minister for Health the number of bed days lost through delayed discharges in hospitals in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, in tabular form. [31726/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.