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Dublin: 8 °C Tuesday 21 October, 2014

Politicians head on day trip to find out “first hand” what’s going on with medical cards

The group of TDs will travel to north Dublin to visit the HSE’s medical card centre.

Jerry Buttimer TD
Jerry Buttimer TD
Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

THIS WEEK HAS seen more high-profile relating to cuts to medical cards.

A mother revealed that she was asked to confirm if her son ‘still had Down syndrome‘ when reapplying for the card that had been taken from him.

Yesterday, Clare Daly TD claimed that these “bizarre” judgements are due to the outsourcing of medical card reviews to a German company.

The Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children will be heading out on a day trip this morning in an attempt to get to the bottom of what’s going on.

The group are visiting the HSE’s medical card centre in north Dublin to meet with staff to discuss issues such as delays in the procession of new applications, delays in the review process, reductions in numbers of discretionary medical cards being issued and medical cards for the over 70s.

“The members of the Committee want to see the application process become less bureaucratic and focused on the needs of applicants,” Chairman and TD for Cork South Central Jerry Buttimer said, “and are very much of the viewpoint that those people who need medical cards and who need access to urgent health care should have it in a manner that it timely.”

We as a committee want to go out to the centre to see the processing system first-hand and to gain an appreciation and understanding regarding the various issues relating to medical cards.

A motion calling on the Government to reverse the cuts to discretionary medical cards was defeated last night when the Government’s counter motion was passed by 72 to 36.

Read: Outsourcing of medical card reviews to German company blamed for ‘bizarre judgements’ >

More: Mother was asked by the HSE if her son ‘still had Down syndrome’ >

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