Free GP Care For Children Under Five Secured

The Department of Health says it has secured funding in the 2014 Budget enough to ensure it can supply free GP care for children aged five years and under next year.

It is thought 240,000 families will benefit from the scheme, expected to cost about €40m.

The free GP care would not cover medicines that can be prescribed for those aged five and under.

Stricter income thresholds for medical cards are expected to contribute towards the cost of the new plan.

The government is currently attempting to phase in a scheme to provide GP care for residents in Ireland, free of charge.

The overall health budget in 2014 is expected to be cut by several hundred million euro next year.

But Chairman of the Irish Medical Organisation's GP Committee Dr Ray Walley told RTÉ's Today programme that the move is a publicity stunt.

He asked why the children of barristers, judges, doctors and teachers should receive a medical card when they can afford to pay for GP care, while others were losing their discretionary medical cards.


Related Irish News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

02 June 2011
Almost 70,000 Carers To Receive Respite Grant This Year
Almost 70,000 carers are due to receive the Respite Care Grant, the majority of them this week. The annual grant of €1,700 is available to all carers providing full-time care and attention to an older person or a person with a disability, regardless of their means or social insurance contributions.
07 February 2013
Primary Health Care Centres To Become Tobacco Free
As part of the National Tobacco Control Framework, the HSE has committed to making all its workplaces and campuses smoke free by 2015. This process is well underway here in the Mid-West, with the Mid-Western Regional Hospital Group including St.
18 August 2010
Developer Billed For Dublin Hospital Bid
A huge new medical facility in south Dublin could be open as early as 2013 - but there would be a 'cost'.
21 August 2015
Concerns Over 'Unsafe Care Environment' At Cork University Hospital
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) has raised concerns over an "unsafe care environment" in a number of wards at Cork University Hospital (CUH). Senior management at CUH confirmed last week that there are currently 78 nursing posts vacant in the hospital. Despite this, the hospital is operating at almost full capacity.
30 May 2013
The Medical Council Launches Its Annual Report
The Medical Council today (30 May 2013) launched its 2012 Annual Report, in addition to a Term Report, outlining its work over the past five years. The Medical Council concludes its term of office at the end of May, with a new Council commencing its term in June.