Written answers

Thursday, 31 March 2022

Department of Health

Vaccination Programme

Photo of Denis NaughtenDenis Naughten (Roscommon-Galway, Independent)
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80. To ask the Minister for Health the status of plans to introduce a no-fault vaccination compensation scheme for severe adverse reactions to State-promoted vaccination programmes; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [11376/22]

Photo of Stephen DonnellyStephen Donnelly (Wicklow, Fianna Fail)
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As the Deputy is aware, in June 2018, the Government agreed to the establishment of an expert group to review the management of clinical negligence claims. It was chaired by the High Court judge, Mr. Justice Charles Meenan. The expert group examined the system from the perspective of the person who has made the claim to explore if there is a better way to deal effectively, yet more sensitively, with certain cases.

Mr. Justice Meenan submitted the final report on the current system for managing clinical negligence claims to the then Minister for Health and Minister for Justice in January 2020, prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government subsequently published the Meenan report in December 2020. One of the report's recommendations is for the establishment of a compensation scheme to deal with certain vaccine damage claims.

On foot of a request from the Department of Health, the Health Research Board, HRB, carried out an evidence review on the vaccine injury redress programmes in other jurisdictions, which was completed in March 2019. The expert group's report, in addition to the HRB's evidence review, and consultation with other Departments and relevant State agencies will inform the development of proposals regarding the establishment of a vaccine compensation scheme, including the need for primary legislation. The Department of Health is continuing planning for the development of policy in this regard.


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