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VHI hike a further burden on families – Ó Caoláin

6 January, 2011 - by Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD

Sinn Féin Health & Children spokesperson Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin has described the price increases for VHI premiums as a further burden on hard-pressed families. He said:

“These VHI rises could not have come at a worse time for hard-pressed families. Worst hit will be families with children, the same families who experience major mortgage debt and are being hit this month with increased Government levies on their incomes.

“The health insurance market expanded during the so-called Celtic Tiger years because many families with children, aware of the perils of relying totally on the public hospital system, took out personal health insurance. Now that market is shrinking again as unemployment has increased and people have had to give up their health insurance.

“All of this points to the need for fundamental health reform. Those who can afford to do so should be contributing to the provision of healthcare through fair taxation. In a new healthcare system there would no longer be a public-private divide and care would be available to all based on need alone. Sinn Féin has proposed the establishment of a Health Funding Commission to plan the transition to such a fairer and more equitable system.” ENDS.

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