Written answers

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Photo of Alan KellyAlan Kelly (Tipperary, Labour)
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693. To ask the Minister for Health if his attention has been drawn to the fact that persons with haemochromatosis require several venesections per year and are paying €80 per venesection; his plans to provide free venesections to persons that have haemochromatosis (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30976/18]

Photo of Séamus HealySéamus Healy (Tipperary, Workers and Unemployed Action Group)
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695. To ask the Minister for Health if he will request those hospitals which have introduced an €80 charge for venesection procedures for hemochromatosis patients to cancel this charge in view of the fact that no such charge applies for dialysis and chemotherapy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31016/18]

Photo of Simon HarrisSimon Harris (Wicklow, Fine Gael)
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I propose to take Questions Nos. 693 and 695 together.

The Health Act 1970 (as amended) provides that all people ordinarily resident in the country are entitled, subject to certain charges, to public in-patient hospital services including consultant services and to public out-patient hospital services. Under the Health (Amendment) Act 2013, a person who has been referred to a hospital for an in-patient service, including that provided on a day case basis, will have to pay the statutory daily charge, currently €80 per day, up to a maximum of €800 per year. On this basis, where venesection is classed as a day case procedure and is not carried out in an out- patient setting, the public in-patient charge applies.

There are a number of exemptions to the in-patient charge (including that provided on a day-case basis), as listed in the Health (Amendment) Act 2013:

- A person with full eligibility;

- A woman receiving services in respect of motherhood;

- A child who is no more than six weeks of age;

- A child receiving services in respect of a defect identified as a health examination held pursuant to the service provided under section 66;

- A person receiving services for the diagnosis or treatment of infectious diseases prescribed under Part IV of the Health Act 1947;

- A person receiving services in respect of which service the person is deemed pursuant to section 45(7) to be a person with full eligibility;

- A person who pursuant to section 2 of the Health (Amendment) Act 1996, in the opinion of the Health Service Executive, has contracted Hepatitis C directly or indirectly from the use of Human Immunoglobin Ant-D or the receipt within the State of another blood product or a blood transfusion.

My Department met with the HSE recently to discuss the provision of venesection services for hereditary haemochromatosis patients. A further meeting is scheduled for later this month.

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