Thursday, 5 March 2020
Department of Defence
Defence Forces Reports
22. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the findings and recommendations of the Malaria Chemoprophylaxis Working Groups 2011-2013 and 2015-2017; if they have been published; the actions the implementation group has taken to give effect to those recommendations; and the frequency with which the group met. [3715/20]
The Malaria Chemoprophylaxis Working Group referred to by the Deputy reported in April 2013 and subsequently in October 2017. As these reports were prepared in the context of current and potential litigation, they are legally privileged and will not be published.
The second Working Group report, finalised in October 2017, made a number of recommendations intended to ensure that the Defence Forces medical policies and practices continue to develop in light of best practice. These recommendations focused on a number of different areas, including planning, training, education and information sharing. There is also a recommendation to establish a Medical Advisory Group to provide ongoing expert medical advice, including that of external experts, to the Defence Forces in relation to a range of medical matters including malaria chemoprophylaxis. An Implementation Group subsequently established to progress these recommendations has met on six occasions to date and is progressing its work through a structured plan.
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.