Policy responses for Ireland - HSRM

Ireland


Policy responses for Ireland

4.2 Entitlement and coverage

18 May 2020:  Flu vaccine to be available to all children aged between two and 12 and anyone up to the age of 69 in an "at-risk" group

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD announced his intention to extend the influenza vaccine to children aged from 2 to 12 years inclusive and all of those in the HSE-defined at-risk groups, aged from 6 months to 69 years. All persons aged over 70 already have access without charges.

Minister Harris said: “A resurgence of COVID-19 during the coming flu season could present a significant challenge to the delivery of healthcare services in the coming winter. That is why officials from my department have been working closely with the HSE to put in place an expansion of the seasonal influenza vaccination programme for winter 2020/21” (https://www.gov.ie/en/press-release/b9bfa1-minister-for-health-announces-influenza-vaccines-to-be-made-availabl/).

All services for COVID-19 are universal and everyone in Ireland can access triage, testing and GP consultation. In mid-March, agreement was reached between the HSE and the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO), one of the representative bodies for GPs in Ireland. The support payment for the Covid-19 emergency agreed for GPs covers all types of remote triage consultation whether by telephone, or other forms of telemedicine such as online video platforms. In addition, for GMS and other eligible medical card patients, a “non-Covid 19” remote consultation fee was also agreed. This in effect provides universal access to remote GP care for duration of COVID-19. From 1 April, all hospital care including private providers is public and accessible to all for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis.

Sources:

Health Service Executive (HSE). Support for General Practitioner Services During Current National Public Health Emergency. https://www.hse.ie/eng/about/who/gmscontracts/2019agreement/circular-support-for-gp-services-during-current-national-public-health-emergency.pdf