Tuesday, 13 October 2020
Department of Health
434. To ask the Minister for Health the reason he has not provided for the reduction in prescription charges set to come into effect on 1 July 2020; if medical card holders will see the reduction; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29635/20]
Prescription charges were introduced in the Health (Amendment) (No. 2) Act 2010, to address the rising costs in the General Medical Services (GMS) scheme.
As part of Budget 2020, the previous Government made an announcement that prescription charges would be reduced by €0.50c for all medical card holders. The charge would be reduced by €0.50c to €1 per item for the over 70s and by €0.50c to €1.50 for persons under 70. The maximum monthly charge would also be reduced to €10 and €15 respectively.
This will represent a benefit to a total of over 1.58 million persons with medical card eligibility.
In recent days the Government has approved the necessary funding required to implement this measure and the reduction in prescription charges will take effect by 1 November 2020.
Officials in my Department are now making the necessary arrangements to draft the secondary legislation required to bring these measures into effect and are engaging with the HSE to ensure all operational arrangements are in place for implementation of this measure.