Fine Gael TD for Dublin Fingal, Alan Farrell has welcomed the HSE’s appointment of the expert panel to examine how medical conditions should be taken into account in relation to medical card eligibility.
“The appointment of the expert panel is a positive step of the utmost importance. It will allow us to address the system’s failings and the mistakes of the past. The membership of the panel consists of 23 professionals from an array of medical backgrounds, one of whom is a patient representative. It is my hope that, thanks to the appointment of the expert panel, political considerations will now be removed from decisions on eligibility for medical cards. Instead, the focus can be wholly placed on medical conditions, the needs to patients and the economic constraints that people face.”
“The expert panel has been tasked with identifying and prioritising the medical conditions which will benefit most from treatments under the medical card system. In addition to this, the terms of reference for the panel obligate them to take the views of patient advocacy groups and patient representatives into account as a means of ensuring the patient perspective is given full consideration.”
“I am glad that we are now moving away from a system where people lose their entitlement to medical cards just because their income is above a predefined threshold, and that we are now replacing it with a system based on awarding medical cards to those with serious medical conditions which necessitate it.”
“As part of this process, a public consultation has been launched. I would like to encourage members of the public, and those in Dublin Fingal who have suffered due to the medical card reviews, to take this opportunity to contribute to the public consultation and have their views and input taken into account.”