Dáil to discuss medical card cuts

Dáil to discuss medical card cuts
Health Minister James Reilly

TDs will today begin debating legislation to cut medical cards for over-70s.

A bill tabled by Health Minister James Reilly will result in around 150,000 older people losing their medical cards.

Instead they'll be moved onto free GP cards, leaving them to cover the cost of their own medication.

One of the Budget's most controversial elements, the bill comes back before the Dáil today, when TDs start putting the necessary legal arrangements in place to change the income limits for medical cards for people over 70.

The legislation will bring 150,000 people over the income limit, and while they are still set to receive free GP care, they'll have to pay for any prescription medication themselves.

Coming only a day after the news that the cost of many health insurance policies would be rising next year, it's likely to prove even more controversial than before.

TDs will vote on the measure tomorrow afternoon.

Before the debate, Minister Reilly will be pressed on whether the HSE can continue to offer safe health services following the cuts in last month's Budget, and on the controversial rollout of primary care centres.

More on this topic

Medical cardholders in poorest households spend 10% of income on private health insuranceMedical cardholders in poorest households spend 10% of income on private health insurance

Cancer patient vows to keep fighting to end  practice of reviewing medical cards of terminally ill patientsCancer patient vows to keep fighting to end practice of reviewing medical cards of terminally ill patients

HSE clarification on medical cards for terminally ill patients welcomed by Irish Hospice FoundationHSE clarification on medical cards for terminally ill patients welcomed by Irish Hospice Foundation

Top-earning GP received €1.1m from medical cardsTop-earning GP received €1.1m from medical cards


More in this Section

DUP urges action to fill abortion ‘vacuum’DUP urges action to fill abortion ‘vacuum’

Body found in burning car in DublinBody found in burning car in Dublin

Taoiseach backs priest’s anti-violence stance over Kevin Lunney attackTaoiseach backs priest’s anti-violence stance over Kevin Lunney attack

Water is restored to Cork homes after burst main causes flood damageWater is restored to Cork homes after burst main causes flood damage


Lifestyle

Tis the season for sequins and excess, but minimalists can stick to their style guns in the season’s next level neutrals. From low-key glitz that’s perfect for party wear to the wardrobe heroes with trans-seasonal appeal, slide into neutral for maximum style with minimal effort. Carolyn Moore reports.Low-key glitz for minimalists with this season's neutrals

How to plump, hydrate and get rid of spots fast before your Christmas party.The Skin Nerd: Getting your quick fix for the festive party season

Irish photographer Seamus Murphy brought music star PJ Harvey to Afghanistan to film part of their documentary, writes Esther McCarthy.Headlong into the war zone in new documentary

Kya deLongchamps shows us how to champion our environmentWinter greens: How to champion our environment this season

More From The Irish Examiner