HSE’s record €14bn budget ‘may not be enough’

Ireland’s health system will be given a €14bn budget next year that has been flagged by Government as the largest in the service’s history — despite HSE fears it may still not be enough to meet existing needs.

HSE director general Tony O’Brien and Health Minister Simon Harris will launch the document this morning alongside a separate Government plan to potentially use income from private patients, hospital car parks and other areas to fund breakthrough drugs like Orkambi.

The HSE’s service plan will include:

  • A €14bn overall budget;
  • €4.4bn spent on acute hospitals;
  • €3.8bn on primary care services;
  • €3.3bn for disability and elderly care;
  • €853m for mental health;
  • €155m for the national ambulance service.

It will also detail on an 8% child home-care packages rise, a 50c cut in prescription charges for over-70s medical card holders, and plans to being new GP contract talks early next year.

However, Mr O’Brien is expected today to note that the funding may still not be enough to meet the existing needs of the service.

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