Sinn Féin Health spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD has said that the Government’s u-turn on medical cards is welcome but long overdue.
“The effective removal of discretion as a category of medical card has had a devastating impact on many families, especially those with seriously ill or disabled children. During the final week of the last Dáil sitting before the elections Sinn Féin tabled a Private Members' motion calling on the Government to reverse the cuts to discretionary medical cards. With a much stronger mandate from the people, we made that call again after the elections.
“That the Government has finally yielded is welcome, if long overdue. We await to see the precise outworking of this decision.
“The Government must ensure that the HSE treats with due respect, consideration and compassion, all applicants for medical cards, taking fully into consideration not only incomes but the burdens imposed by medical conditions, illnesses and disabilities. It should extend free general practitioner care to all on a programmed, timetabled and transparent basis.”