Thalidomide Victims Compensation

Ceisteanna (136)

James Browne

Ceist:

136. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Health the position regarding State support for those who suffered injuries resulting from the ingestion of thalidomide; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49456/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Following an Irish Government decision in 1975, the Government granted an ex-gratia sum equivalent to 4 times the German lump-sum and an ex-gratia monthly allowance for life equal to the German monthly allowance to each of the Irish children found to have thalidomide related injuries. The German monthly payments are made by the Contergan Foundation, which is established under German legislation. From 1st August 2013, the Contergan Foundation substantially increased its monthly payments to thalidomide survivors, including Irish survivors. There are currently 29 Irish people in receipt of ex-gratia monthly payments from my Department.

Both the German payments and the Irish ex-gratia payments made to the survivors are exempt from tax, including DIRT and are not reckonable as means for the purpose of Social Welfare payments.

In addition to the initial lump sum and monthly payments for life, the supports provided to each Irish survivor include a medical card on an administrative basis regardless of means, provision of appliances, artificial limbs, equipment, housing adaptations and access to a full range of primary care, hospital and personal social services.

There is a designated senior manager in the Health Service Executive to act as a liaison with regard to the ongoing health and personal social service needs of Irish survivors.

It is important to note that it is open to any Irish person to apply to the Contergan Foundation for assessment of their disability as being attributable to thalidomide. Any Irish person who establishes that their injury is attributable to thalidomide will be offered appropriate supports by the Irish Government, commensurate with those currently provided to Irish thalidomide survivors, as outlined above.

Primary Care Centres

Ceisteanna (137)

Eamon Scanlon

Ceist:

137. Deputy Eamon Scanlon asked the Minister for Health the opening date for the new primary care centre in Tubbercurry, County Sligo; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49457/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Home Help Service Provision

Ceisteanna (138)

Willie O'Dea

Ceist:

138. Deputy Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Health when funds will be allocated to enable a person (details supplied) in the midwest region who has been approved for home help and is on a waiting list to access same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49465/19]

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

Ceisteanna (139)

Seamus Healy

Ceist:

139. Deputy Seamus Healy asked the Minister for Health if a medical card will be approved for persons (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49466/19]

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.

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

Ceisteanna (140)

Kevin O'Keeffe

Ceist:

140. Deputy Kevin O'Keeffe asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a prosthetic limb in view of the length of time the person has been waiting to date. [49470/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Hospital Waiting Lists Data

Ceisteanna (141)

Martin Ferris

Ceist:

141. Deputy Martin Ferris asked the Minister for Health the number of patients on the cardiology waiting list at University Hospital Kerry in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49478/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Reducing waiting time for patients for hospital operations and procedures is a key priority for Government. In this regard, the Government is committed to improving waiting times for hospital appointments and procedures.

The latest National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) figures show that there are 945 patients on the cardiology Outpatient waiting list in University Hospital Kerry. Of these, 51% (486) are waiting 12 months or less. There are no patients waiting for an Inpatient/Daycase cardiology procedure.

Budget 2020 announced that the Government has further increased investment in tackling waiting lists, with funding to the NTPF increasing from €75 million in 2019 to €100 million in 2020.

My Department is working with the HSE and National Treatment Purchase Fund to develop the Scheduled Care Access Plan 2020. The National Service Plan 2020 will set out HSE planned activity level for the year ahead, while the NTPF will work with the hospital system to provide additionality to improve access to inpatient/daycase treatment and with a particular focus on hospital outpatient services.

In this regard, I would encourage all hospital groups and individual hospitals to engage with the NTPF to identify waiting list proposals for the remainder of this year and for 2020.

Please see the document at the link for the requested information.

UHK Cardiology OPD

Health Services Staff Recruitment

Ceisteanna (142)

Danny Healy-Rae

Ceist:

142. Deputy Danny Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Health the recruitment process used to advertise for nurses and care staff in community hospitals; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49480/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Thalidomide Victims Compensation

Ceisteanna (143)

Michael Healy-Rae

Ceist:

143. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Health his views on a matter regarding thalidomide (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49494/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

There are a number of cases concerning thalidomide before the High Court at present, which are being managed by the State Claims Agency on behalf of the Irish State.

The State Defendants in the proceedings are the Minister for Health and Children, Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, the Attorney General and Ireland. An order for discovery was sought by the Plaintiff and was made by the High Court on 10 April, 2019. That order has neither been perfected nor served upon the State and accordingly the time for compliance with discovery obligations has not commenced to run.

An application is pending before the Court to vary the discovery ordered and this has not as yet been determined. Review of the data necessary to comply with the discovery order in the context of proceedings is ongoing and is necessarily the subject of legal advice and privilege. Accordingly, it is inappropriate for me to give further comment or detail in respect of the process until discovery has concluded and the proceedings resolved.

No State Defendant has been determined to be non-compliant with the discovery order in these proceedings.

Pharmacy Data

Ceisteanna (144)

John Brassil

Ceist:

144. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Health the number of claims by pharmacies in each of the years 2016 to 2018 for non-dispensing fees in cases in which the pharmacist exercised his or her professional judgment and did not dispense an item on a GMS prescription; the amount paid in non-dispensing fees in each of those years; and the value of the non-dispensed medicines in respect of these claims for non-dispensing in each year in tabular form. [49496/19]

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.

Health Services Staff Recruitment

Ceisteanna (145)

Danny Healy-Rae

Ceist:

145. Deputy Danny Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Health his plans to review the recruitment process for community hospitals in view of the fact that the current process is not functioning; if so, the timeframe for the review; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49498/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Hospital Waiting Lists

Ceisteanna (146)

Michael Healy-Rae

Ceist:

146. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Health the status of a hospital appointment for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49500/19]

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 Waiting Lists

Ceisteanna (147)

Niamh Smyth

Ceist:

147. Deputy Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Health the status of a knee replacement operation for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49501/19]

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 Waiting Lists

Ceisteanna (148)

Éamon Ó Cuív

Ceist:

148. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Health when an operation will be provided for a person (details supplied); the reason for the delay in issuing a date for the procedure; if the person can undergo the procedure on the treatment purchase fund scheme or in another way; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49502/19]

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.

With regard to whether the patient can avail of treatment through the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF). The NTPF works with public hospitals, as opposed to with patients directly, to offer and provide the funding for treatment to clinically suitable long waiting patients who are on an inpatient/day case waiting list for surgery, having been referred on to such a list following clinical assessment by a consultant/specialist at an outpatient clinic.

The key criteria of the NTPF is the prioritisation of the longest waiting patients first. While the NTPF identifies patients eligible for NTPF treatment, it is solely on the basis of their time spent on the Inpatient/Daycase Waiting List. The clinical suitability of the patient to avail of NTPF funded treatment is determined by the public hospital.

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

Medical Aids and Appliances Provision

Ceisteanna (149)

Éamon Ó Cuív

Ceist:

149. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Health the reason an art assist machine is not available to a person (details supplied) in view of the exceptional circumstances; the reason the assistance of the machines is not provided to patients in view of the fact they are a preventative medicine; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49504/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Food Labelling

Ceisteanna (150)

Noel Grealish

Ceist:

150. Deputy Noel Grealish asked the Minister for Health the position regarding the development of national food labelling legislation; his views on front-of-pack nutrition labelling; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49514/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

Food labelling in the EU is governed by Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 on the provision of food information to consumers (FIC). This contains mandatory requirements in regard to the provision of nutrition labelling in pre-packaged foods.

The Regulation also provides that EU Member States can recommend use, within their own territory, of a voluntary scheme which provides additional forms of expression or presentation of nutritional information for specified nutrients on the front-of-pack (FOP) of a product, once the proposed scheme meets certain criteria. There is currently no harmonised legislation at EU level on front-of-pack labelling (FOP).

In 2016, the Department of Health published an 'Obesity Policy and Action Plan for 2016-2025' which included an action point to review EU consumer information labelling of food products and with a view to its application in the Irish market. This issue will be considered in due course by the national Obesity Policy Implementation Oversight Group (OPIOG).

Hospital Waiting Lists

Ceisteanna (151)

Michael Healy-Rae

Ceist:

151. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae 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. [49520/19]

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.

Health Services Provision

Ceisteanna (152)

Kevin O'Keeffe

Ceist:

152. Deputy Kevin O'Keeffe asked the Minister for Health if additional therapy will be arranged for a child (details supplied). [49521/19]

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.

Treatment Abroad Scheme

Ceisteanna (153)

Peter Burke

Ceist:

153. Deputy Peter Burke asked the Minister for Health the status of an application by a person (details supplied). [49522/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The HSE is responsible for the operation of the Cross-Border Directive and under the terms of the Directive there is a National Contact Point (NCP) in each Member State. The NCP for Ireland is located within the HSE's CBD office. A key function of the NCP here is to facilitate exchange of information for patients regarding their rights and entitlements to receive healthcare in another Member State, in particular the terms and conditions for reimbursement of cost and the procedures for accessing and determining those entitlements.

Under the terms of the Cross-Border Directive it is the responsibility of the patient to make the arrangements for any treatment they wish to receive in another Member State and it is therefore not possible to assist the patient directly in the sourcing of treatment in the UK. A patient may wish to contact the NCP in the UK if seeking additional information relating to treatment available and alternative locations for the particular treatment. Contact details for all NCP's are available from the HSE's NCP on its website - http://www.hse.ie/eng/services/list/1/schemes/cbd/ - and also by phone and email.

Departmental Expenditure

Ceisteanna (154)

Barry Cowen

Ceist:

154. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Health the amount spent by his Department and each agency under the aegis of his Department on the National Ploughing Championships in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, by online advertising, offline advertising, promotional material, wages, photography, stand rental and other costs; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49542/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

The table details the Department's spend at the National Ploughing Championships between the years 2016 and 2019.

2016

2017

2018

2019 (To Date)

Offline advertising

€ -  

€ -  

€ -  

€3,075.00

Promotional material

€ -  

€ -  

€5,559.60

€715.25

Wages (Travel & Subsistence)

€ -  

€ -  

€74.01

€4,562.24

Stand rental

€ -  

€ -  

€548.40

€69,189.03

Other costs

€ -  

€ -  

€ -  

€6,678.40

Department of Health Costs

€ -  

€ -  

€6,182.01

€84,219.92

Safefood

€9,064.00

Total Costs

€ -  

€ -  

€6,182.01

€93,283.92

Psychological Services

Ceisteanna (155)

Shane Cassells

Ceist:

155. Deputy Shane Cassells asked the Minister for Health when an appointment will be made for a vacant psychologist post based in Kells, County Meath; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49549/19]

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.

Psychological Services

Ceisteanna (156)

Shane Cassells

Ceist:

156. Deputy Shane Cassells asked the Minister for Health the number of vacant psychologist posts in County Meath; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49550/19]

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.

Health Services Staff Recruitment

Ceisteanna (157)

Jack Chambers

Ceist:

157. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Health the status of a post (details supplied); his plans to replace the post; the interim measures being put in place for same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49551/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

As this is a service matter, I have asked the Children's Health Ireland to respond to you directly, as soon as possible.

Disability Services Provision

Ceisteanna (158)

Thomas P. Broughan

Ceist:

158. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health the number of cases tabled to be taken by the early intervention team at Coolock primary care centre in 2020; if this is a reduced number of cases than previously tabled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49552/19]

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.

Audiology Services Data

Ceisteanna (159)

Thomas P. Broughan

Ceist:

159. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health the number of full-time paediatric audiologists working in CHO area 9 in 2017, 2018 and to-date in 2019; his plans to further increase the number; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49559/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

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

Hospital Consultant Data

Ceisteanna (160)

Thomas P. Broughan

Ceist:

160. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Health the number of full-time endometriosis excision specialists at Beaumont Hospital, Dublin 9, in each of the past three years in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49560/19]

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.