Tuesday, 26 February 2019
Department of Defence
Defence Forces Medicinal Products
44. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the actions taken by the implementation group on foot of the recommendations of the reports of the working group on Lariam; and the further actions planned. [9224/19]
A Malaria Chemoprophylaxis Working Group was established in January 2011 and reported in April 2013. The Group was re-convened in August 2015 and reported in October 2017. The purpose of the Group was to review, inter alia, issues arising in relation to the use of Lariam, particularly in the context of the current and potential litigation.
The re-convened Working Group's recommendations focus on a number of different areas including planning, training and education/information sharing as well as the establishment of a Medical Advisory Group. This will formalise the provision of on-going expert medical advice, including external expert medical advice, to the Defence Forces in relation to a range of medical matters including malaria chemoprophylaxis.
I have accepted these recommendations and have established an Implementation Group. This Implementation Group has met on a number of occasions and is progressing its work through the formation of a structured plan to implement the recommendations as outlined in the Terms of Reference. It will include planning, training and education/information sharing as well as the establishment of a Medical Advisory Group.
Given that there is litigation pending in relation to these matters which is being managed by the State Claims Agency, the Deputy will appreciate that it would be inappropriate for me to comment further.