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Magdalene survivors to get specialised health cards from next month

The women will be eligible for a range of health services from the start of July.

The interior of the now derelict Sisters of Our Lady of Charity Magdalene Laundry on Sean McDermott St in Dublin's north inner city.
The interior of the now derelict Sisters of Our Lady of Charity Magdalene Laundry on Sean McDermott St in Dublin's north inner city.
Image: Julien Behal

THE GOVERNMENT HAS announced the roll-out of long-awaited health services for women who worked in Magdalene laundries and two similar institutions.

Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald and Minister of State for Primary and Social Care, Kathleen Lynch, confirmed the HSE will begin issuing ‘RWRCI cards’ to women next month.

Eligibility for health services will take effect on 1 July and in the meantime, the HSE will be directly contacting the women who have accepted a formal offer made under the Restorative Justice Scheme.

The cards issued to women will identify the holder as qualifying for a range of health services including GP services, prescribed drugs, dental services, home nursing and support, and counselling services.

The HSE will also provide further information directly to the qualifying women about health benefits.

Commenting on the toll-out of the cards, Fitzgerald said the government has already set up a range of payments and supports for the women who worked in these institutions of up to €100,000.

Read: How many died in Magdalene laundries? Survivors at odds with Government on the figures>

Read: ‘These children need to be remembered’: It’s almost a year since the Tuam Babies controversy>

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