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Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly PA
Cost of Living

Plan to abolish public hospital charges to come before Cabinet later

Currently patients can face a charge of €80 per day with an annual cap of a maximum of 10 days costing €800.

THE HEALTH MINISTER is seeking approval today to abolish public hospital charges.

Stephen Donnelly is bringing the proposal to Cabinet today to legislate for the change.

Currently patients can face a charge of €80 per day with an annual cap of a maximum of 10 days costing €800.

If successful, Donnelly hopes they can be removed by April.  

The plan to scrap the fees were included as part of the government’s Budget measures in response to the cost-of-living crisis.

Children under 16 had fees for their hospital care abolished last year.

Speaking on RTÉ Radio One this morning, Donnelly said the cost of measure is around €30 million euro.

“The Irish Cancer Society has been advocating for this for years,” he said.

He said patients “facing serious treatment who are very sick are also being handed a bill of €800 euro”, adding that he is hoping to receive support from Cabinet colleagues today.

“I’d like to bring it through the Oireachtas then in March and have it in place in April,” he told the Morning Ireland programme.

Additional reporting by Christina Finn

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