Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Monday, 8 March 2021
Seanad Committee on the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union
Cross-Border Healthcare Directive: Discussion
Mr. Damien Quigley:
I thank the Senator for the kind sentiment. We initially set a target of 3,000 members and we are very close to that target. If we had certainty that the scheme would continue, we would be in a position to employ staff and to roll it out to families. It would be a welcome development and our members would appreciate it. The medical officers of the Defence Forces have totally embraced the scheme and know about the benefits of membership of general. We know, through our committees and through a breakdown of every meeting we hold with other groups and so on, that bringing the families on board would be a fantastic initiative. We have been able to help family members as it is. We have helped probably in excess of 20 family members, who avail of the scheme in the same way but we do not source the finance for them. They deal directly with their own credit union or bank but we have been able to get them the same rates. Mr. Regan and Kingsbridge have kindly reduced their rates for our members. Even though family members are not officially or statutorily on our books at the moment, which we hope they will be soon, a large number of family members avail of cross-Border treatment and of the reduced rates that Kingsbridge has offered. That has been very welcome.