Fine Gael TD for Dublin Fingal, Alan Farrell said that the Cabinet approval of a new Bill to provide a universal GP service for everyone over the age of 70 is a positive step forward and will benefit many people across Dublin Fingal.
“I am pleased that the Cabinet has approved a new Bill which will allow for the provision of free, universal GP care for all of those over 70, regardless of income or means. Current estimations are that roughly 36,000 people who are over 70 pay for GP services as they are not covered by either a medical card or a GP visit card.
“The legislation to allow for this free service to be offered to all of those over 70 must be passed by Dáil Éireann and Seanad Éireann before it can become a reality. Following this, the aim is now to have the free, universal GP service for over 70s in the second quarter of this year, at the same time as the introduction of the service for children under the age of 6.
“The provision of access to GP care without having to worry about cost for those under 6 and those over 70 are the first two phases of the roll-out of universal GP care. These are important steps on the journey towards ensuring that all citizens have access to such a service.
“Many older people in the North County will benefit from the introduction of a free GP service for the over 70s and will be able to focus on their health without having to worry about the cost of visiting a doctor. I am pleased that this service is set to coincide with the introduction of the free GP service for children under the age of 6. Providing parents who have young children with peace of mind in times when their children are feeling ill is of the utmost importance and, with the youngest population demographics in the country, there will be many families in every community across Dublin Fingal who will be able to utilise this service.”