The new programme for government document details how the three parties propose to deal with healthcare.
Implementing Sláintecare is seen as a key priority, with a promise to finalise the new Sláintecare consultant contract and legislate for public-only work in public hospitals.
They also promise to extend medical cards to the terminally ill, extend free GP care to more children and cap parking charges in hospitals.
Significant work will be done for women’s health, mental health and drug treatment policy including full implementation of the recommendations contained in Dr Scally’s Reports of the Scoping Inquiry, and all other reports into Cervical Check and free contraception over a phased period, starting with women aged 17-25.
In terms of drugs and addiction, promises have been made to review the regulations and legislation that apply to cannabis use for medical conditions and palliative care having regard to the experience in Northern Ireland and Great Britain, and convene a Citizens’ Assembly to consider matters relating to drugs use.
The document reads the “Mission” is “Universal Healthcare”.
“Our priority is to protect public health, patients and to ensure capacity for future surges of Covid-19,” the document reads.
“At its core, Sláintecare commits to ensuring people have access to affordable health care services.
“Many of the healthcare responses to COVID-19 are important elements of Sláintecare, and we will identify how to keep the gains,” the document adds.
“Underpinning our approach will be the provision of more health services in the community, increases in capacity including bed, ICU and critical care capacity and the promotion of good public health policy.”
The parties say leadership at the highest level with the Cabinet Committee on Health, chaired by the Taoiseach, will give overall strategic direction and will oversee implementation of Sláintecare.
Over the lifetime of the Government, they say they will seek to expand universal access to healthcare in a manner which fair and affordable.
In the wake of Covid-19, the parties will seek to restart essential services which had been put on pause due to the pandemic.
The document details how the health service in Ireland will be dramatically changed in order to adjust to a new normal in the sector.
Trolleys and waiting lists have plagued previous governments, one it appears they wanted to tackle head on. Under this banner, the document commits to creating significant additional capacity the parties will: