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Over 9,000 children are to be given medical cards

And pensioners will receive cheaper medicine.

Image: RollingNews.ie

AROUND 9,000 CHILDREN will qualify for medical cards after cabinet agreement on new legislation.

Health Minister Simon Harris tonight announced that children in receipt of the domiciliary care allowance (DCA) would automatically qualify for a medical card.

The DCA is a monthly payment for a child under 16 who has a severe disability and “who requires ongoing care and attention, substantially over and above the care and attention usually required by a child of the same age”. The allowance isn’t means tested.

Harris said the measure will be introduced in early 2017.

“The latest figures show that this initiative will benefit approximately 9,000 very sick children who are not currently eligible for a medical card. As a result 33,000 children will be eligible for a full Medical Card. It is my intention to introduce this measure as early as possible in 2017.”

The cabinet has also agreed to cut the prescription charge for over 70s by €0.50 per item or €5 per month to €2 per item and €20 maximum per month respectively from 1 March 2017.

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This will see some 330,000 pensioners receive cheaper medicines.

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