Tag Archives: medical cards

From top: John Wall, Minister for Health Simon Harris; Labour TD Alan Kelly speaking in Dáil last night

Last night.

In the Dáil.

Labour TD Alan Kelly raised the case of John Wall – in light of claims that medical cards will be provided for people who are terminally ill.

He said:

“On the provision of medical cards for people who are terminally ill, I see that the Minister for Health, Deputy Harris, has announced that he is doing something about the matter.

He said he had asked the HSE to deal with it.

I want to make a commitment to Mr John Wall who has fought for this measure for the last year and to whom I spoke earlier today.

I have got to know him quite well and admire him.

He is a man with a terminal illness and wants to know where the measure is budgeted for. It is either budgeted for or it is not.

It cannot just be a case of asking the HSE and it coming back in a few weeks to state it can do it.

The provision of medical cards for terminally ill patients is either covered by a budget line or it is not.

If it is, where is it covered?

A 24-month profile is probably what is needed because we have to have some way of dealing with the matter.

I want to see where provision is made and want to see the details.

Until I see them, it does not exist and I want it to. I want the Minister to show it to me.

I will congratulate him on the specific item if he does, but I cannot see it. I want it to be proved that provision has been made.”

Yesterday: Extended

Previously: Result

Cancer sufferer John Wall (above) has secured a meeting with the Minister for Health

John Wall has been living with Stage 4 prostrate cancer for the past two years.

Over the last few weeks, Mr Wall has been tweeting about how his emergency medical card had been revoked eight months after he received it, despite the Department of Health website previously claiming such cards would be valid for 18 months.

Mr Wall, an air traffic controller at Shannon Airport, complained to the Ombudsman Peter Tyndall and recently claimed the office attempted to close his case without advising him or addressing his concerns.

And he kept on tweeting, gathering followers with every tweet.

Yesterday John was  told how he now has a meeting with the Minister for Health Simon Harris will take place next month, the Office of the Ombudsman is now carrying out a complete review and all his complaints have been upheld.

In fairness.

Related: Ombudsman raises concerns about HSE medical card policy (Jennifer Bray, The Irish Times)

Yesterday: Medical Card Sans Frontières

Ask A Broadsheet Reader

From top: John Wall and medical card entitlement for ‘Frontier Workers’



Frontier worker?

Rollingnews/ Clare FM


Cian O’Daly and son Henry

You may recall the post concerning the removal of Health Card privileges from five-year-old Henry O’Daly,  who is suffering from Hypo-Plastic Left Heart Syndrome.


Dad Cian writes:

Thanks to everyone for the amazing level of support shown over the past few days. I am pleased to let you know that the matter has now reached a positive conclusion whereby Leo Varadkar’s parliamentary policy advisor phoned [Friday] to apologise and to provide definitive confirmation that Henry will retain his medical card. I have no doubt that the support shown by all of you coupled with representations made on my behalf by The Live Line with Joe Duffy Team and the office of [Labour’s] John Lyons TD, expedited the whole process of review and forced the HSE to reverse their decision.

Previously: Dear Leo


Peter Fitzpatrick (right) whose niece Louise has leukemia and health campaigner Barra de Roiste prepare for the ‘Our Children’s Health’ protest outside Government Buildings this morning.

Protestors are seeking legislation to be passed so any child with a serious illness will have a medical card.


(Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland)

medicalcardHow difficult is it to obtain a medical card?

According to a report in today’s Trinity News a woman suffering from Motor Neurone Disease has been asked to send the HSE a letter requesting the return of documents from the HSE, so she can submit the same documents back to to the HSE, otherwise she loses her medical card.


The woman was granted a temporary medical card in May on foot of an application by her GP seeking immediate access to services and equipment.

She submitted the relevant information detailing her personal finances in July and received a letter from the HSE a month later requesting the submission of the same financial information, and the same form filled out again.

“Unfortunately if you don’t fill it out again, your card will be suspended, so that is your own decision,” she was told helpfully.


HSE tells woman with incurable neurological condition that losing her medical card would be her decision (Tommy Gavin, Trinity News)





What do we tell them?


What have you done?

Minister for Health James Reilly has said that elderly people have nothing to be afraid of when it comes to a review of the medical card scheme.

James Reilly says he has spoken to the Taoiseach Enda Kenny and they have decided to launch a communications campaign to explain the review.

The Government has announced it wants to save €113m through the medical card probity scheme – but has declined to say how many medical cards will be lost as a result.


Health Minister asks families to reassure elderly about medical cards (Breakingnews.ie)

(Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland)


Some 20,000 people over the age of 70 will lose their medical card under legislation changing the criteria for the card.

Minister of State for Health Alex White said the 20,000 would instead be eligible for a GP-visit card. The changes are part of the Health (Alteration of Criteria for Eligibility) Bill which reduces the income threshold for a person to still retain the medical card from €700 a week to €600 or €1,400 to €1,200 for couples.

Independent TD Tom Fleming said the overall budget for the medical card system was €750 million. “The €24 million being saved is nitpicking in the overall context.” He said 94 per cent of people over 70 visited their GP on a regular basis. “It follows then that they have a high intake of drugs to them cope with illness and disability.”

The Kerry South TD said savings could be trebled or quadrupled if the whole cost of drugs issue was dealt with.


Related: That Would Be A Generical Matter

20,000 people aged over 70 to lose medical cards (Marie O’Halloran, Irish Times)

(Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland)