Press Releases

Minister Harris welcomes the passing of the Children’s Health Bill through the Oireachtas and early establishment of Children’s Health Ireland

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today welcomed the passing of the Children’s Health Bill 2018 through the Oireachtas. The Bill provides for the establishment of a single statutory entity, Children’s Health Ireland, to provide paediatric services and take over responsibility for the services currently provided by the existing three Dublin children’s hospitals, Our

Minister for Health speaks at National Convention of Older Person’s Councils

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD spoke today at the National Convention of Older Person’s Councils in Co Wicklow. The event brings together a diverse group of older people and Age Friendly practitioners from across the country to discuss the various challenges they face and significantly the progress made over the last year. The ageing

Minister for Health signs 23 sections of the Public Health Alcohol Bill into effect.

Minister for Health Simon Harris has signed the order to commence 23 sections of the Public Health Alcohol Bill into operation.The legislation, which was passed overwhelmingly by the Oireachtas last month, legislates for alcohol as a public health priority. From November 12th next year (2019): – alcohol advertising in or on public service vehicles, at public

Minister for Health opens 3rd Annual Conference of All Ireland Congenital Heart Disease Network – Construction of four new paediatric intensive care beds approved

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD today (Friday ) officially opened the third Annual Conference of the All-Island Congenital Heart Disease Network and announced the approval of a four-bed extension to the paediatric intensive care unit in Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin to support the development of the network which provides cardiac care to children

Minister for Health, Simon Harris T.D has welcomed the Government decision to join a European research group on clinical trials

Mr Harris secured Cabinet approval this week for Ireland to become a member of a European Research Infrastructure Consortium, namely the European Clinical Research Infrastructure Network (ECRIN). ECRIN supports the conduct of clinical research across countries in Europe and provides its members with a range of supports and services, including facilitating the preparation and implementation

Inaugural meeting of Sláintecare Implementation Advisory Council

Establishment of Sláintecare Implementation Advisory Council is a very important milestone in the implementation of Sláintecare – Minister Harris Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, speaking today (Wednesday) at the inaugural meeting of the Sláintecare Implementation Advisory Council, said that the establishment of the Council was a very important milestone in implementing Sláintecare. The Council

Launch of Healthy Ireland Survey 2018

Estimated 80,000 fewer smokers. Where you live impacts your health. Binge drinking still a problem. Minister of State for Health Promotion, Catherine Byrne TD today launched the annual Healthy Ireland Survey, funded by the Department of Health and conducted by Ipsos MRBI. Prevalence of smoking has dropped from 23% in 2015 to 20% in 2018

Minister Daly launches the second National Positive Ageing Strategy Stakeholder Forum

This morning (Wednesday) Minister for Mental Health and Older People Jim Daly TD launched the second National Positive Ageing Strategy Stakeholder Forum. On foot of the successful Stakeholder Forum held last year, the Department of Health held the second annual forum. On the day the Department aimed to identify, through the engagement of stakeholder groups,

Minister opens the 3rd National Patient Safety Office (NPSO) Conference in Dublin Castle

Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD today (Wednesday) opened the third National Patient Safety Office (NPSO) Conference in The Printworks, Dublin Castle. This year’s conference focused on the importance of communication and to highlight the value of dialogue between patient and medical professionals. Addressing over 400 attendees, including health professionals, health service managers and patient

Minister for Health publishes the report of Mr Justice Charles Meenan on an alternative system for dealing with claims arising out of CervicalCheck

The Minister for Health Simon Harris has today published the report of Mr Justice Charles Meenan on an alternative system for dealing with claims arising out of CervicalCheck. Judge Meenan was tasked by Government in August with identifying further mechanisms to avoid adversarial court proceedings for the women and families affected by the CervicalCheck issues. The Judge’s

NTPF Publication of Waiting List Figures for September 2018

The National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF) have today (12 October 2018) published the waiting list numbers to the end of September . The waiting list data published by the NTPF includes details on patients who are waiting for an inpatient, day case or outpatient appointment at the end of September. Details on the number of patients

Minister for Health meets with Dr Gabriel Scally

Minister for Health Simon Harris has met with Dr Gabriel Scally this afternoon. The Minister has asked Dr Scally to provide the independent review of the implementation plan recommended in his report. Dr Scally will also be carrying out further work in relation to the laboratories. Minister Harris said: “I was pleased to meet Dr

Health Ministers mark World Mental Health Day

Ministers for Health Simon Harris, Jim Daly and Catherine Byrne marked World Mental Health Day today (Wednesday). This year’s theme for World Mental Health Day is “young people and mental health in a changing world”, with a focus on raising awareness among adolescents and young adults of ways to look after their mental health.  

Minister for Health welcomes campaign to select members of the HSE Board

Minister for Health Simon Harris welcomes the commencement of the campaign to select members for appointment to the HSE Board. The Public Appointments Service will oversee this process. Details of how to apply for these positions are available on the Stateboards.ie website. The process begins as the Minister introduces the legislation to establish the HSE board

Sláintecare top priority in health budget 2019; investment & improved access to GP services; more help for families & older people with health costs – Health Ministers

€75 million funding for NTPF to reduce waiting lists further €55 million additional funding for mental health Funding for 100 therapy posts to address assessment of need waiting lists Implementation of health-led national drugs strategy a priority Minister Simon Harris and Ministers of State Finian McGrath, Jim Daly and Catherine Byrne have welcomed the significant

Ministers to meet with management of Lakers service next week after fire damage

The Minister for Health Simon Harris and Minister of State with special responsibility for disabilities Finian McGrath are to meet with management of the Lakers Service next week. Services for more than 400 people with special needs have been suspended due to the damage caused by a fire. On Friday, Minister Harris met with the

National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services Steering Group – 7th Meeting

The 7th meeting of the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services Steering Group was held on Friday 28th September 2018. The Steering Group received presentations from representatives of the Private Hospitals Association and Professor Peter Kearney from the European Society of Cardiology on the Atlas of Cardiology. The Secretariat of the Review provided an update

Minister Byrne welcomes passing of historic Public Health Alcohol Bill through the Dáil

Thursday 4th October 2018 The Minister of State for Health Promotion and the National Drugs Strategy, Catherine Byrne TD, has welcomed the passing of the Public Health Alcohol Bill in the Dáil yesterday evening. “This groundbreaking Bill was introduced under the Healthy Ireland framework to improve our nation’s health. It is the first ever piece

Minister for Health welcomes HIQA’s work on the introduction of a PrEP programme

Minister for Health Simon Harris has welcomed HIQA’s work on the introduction of a PrEP programme for populations at substantial risk of sexual acquisition of HIV. The Health Information Quality Authority was asked by the Government to carry out a Health Technology Assessment of introducing a Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) programme in Ireland. The aim is

Minister for Health welcomes appointment of Dr Peter Boylan to assist with preparations for the implementation of arrangements for termination of pregnancy and related services

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD has welcomed the appointment by the Health Service Executive of Dr Peter Boylan to assist with their preparations for the implementation of arrangements for termination of pregnancy and related services. Dr Boylan’s role will include consultation with key stakeholders and communications relevant to the services on behalf of the

Minister Simon Harris announces membership of Sláintecare Implementation Advisory Council

Wednesday 3rd October 2018 Minister for Health Simon Harris TD has today, Wednesday 3rd October, announced the membership of the Sláintecare Implementation Advisory Council. The advisory council will have 23 members from a range of backgrounds, including a number of medical professionals, experts and patient advocates. Announcing the membership, the Minister said, “The Sláintecare Implementation

Ministers welcome launch of National Breastfeeding Week 2018

Monday 1st October 2018 Minister for Health Simon Harris TD, and Minister of State for Health Promotion Catherine Byrne TD today welcomed the launch of National Breastfeeding Week 2018. “Breastfeeding is important for the health of mothers as well as babies and young children”, said Minister Harris. “It is important that we protect, promote and

Minister for Health welcomes Oireachtas committee on Health’s pre-legislative examination of Patient Safety Bill

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD welcomes the Oireachtas committee on Health’s pre-legislative examination of the Patient Safety Bill, which began this morning. This legislation will provide for mandatory open disclosure in respect of serious patient safety incidents. The Patient Safety Bill will also provide for mandatory reporting of serious events to the appropriate regulatory

Cancer Patient Advisory Committee Call for Expressions of Interest for Membership

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today sought expressions of interest for membership of a Cancer Patient Advisory Committee. “The establishment of the Cancer Patient Advisory Committee marks a further step in the implementation of National Cancer Strategy 2017-2026” said the Minister. “The Cancer Patient Forum was a major feature of the development of

Minister for Health marks Mouth Cancer Awareness Day

Each year in Ireland around 700 people are diagnosed with mouth, head or neck cancer; this mainly affects older men but can also affect women and younger people. Speaking today (Wednesday), Minister for Health Simon Harris TD said “I would encourage everyone to take note of the key messages around Mouth Cancer Awareness Day. It

Minister for Health launches HPV Vaccine Information Campaign

Minister Harris, acknowledging the ongoing work of the HSE to promote HPV immunisation and counteract misinformation, said “I am pleased to see the large increase in uptake of the HPV vaccine which reflects the work carried out across the medical community, including school vaccination teams, GPs and pharmacists, to provide accurate and trusted information. The

Minister Harris welcomes decision to defer industrial action by Section 39 workers

“I welcome the deferral of industrial action by SIPTU and I’m pleased that key healthcare services will not be disrupted on Tuesday. It is recognised that Section 39 agencies provide vital services to often the most vulnerable in our society. I also welcome the reconvening by the Workplace Relations Commission of talks on the issues

Drugs survey reveals that levels of recent drug use has risen slightly

Recent levels of all illegal drug use have risen in Ireland by 1.9% between 2010/11 and 2014/15. Today’s findings are revealed in the study “Drug Use in Ireland and Northern Ireland”, arising from data collected in the fourth Drug Prevalence Survey. Results released today relating to Cannabis, Polydrug and New Psychoactive Substance use and Prescription

Emergency Department Taskforce Unscheduled Care Forum “Perspectives from the Frontline”

The Emergency Department (ED) Taskforce Unscheduled Care Forum “Perspectives from the Frontline” took place at Dublin Castle on 4 September 2018. The purpose of the forum was to provide front-line staff from across the health care services with the opportunity to share their views, experiences and suggestions on how further improvements in managing the unscheduled

Minister Daly congratulates Leaving Certificate students and asks them to take care of their mental health

Minister for Mental Health Jim Daly today (Wednesday) congratulated all the students collecting the results of their Leaving Certificate. Minister Daly said “I would like to congratulate all the students who received their Leaving Certificate results today. Completing the Leaving Cert is a significant achievement, irrespective of results. This, fortunately, will be a very happy

Reminder – Have your Say on the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services

A public consultation by the Department of Health on behalf of the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services is currently underway. The deadline for the submission of responses is 1 p.m. on Friday 17th August. The link to complete the consultation questionnaire is available at https://health.gov.ie/consultations/ Responses to the consultation will help the Steering Group

Minister Harris publishes Sláintecare Implementation Strategy marking important milestone towards delivering health reform

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today published the Sláintecare Implementation Strategy. This marks the latest in a series of important milestones towards delivering a programme of health reform arising from the Sláintecare report. Minister Harris said “The Sláintecare Report sets out a vision for the future of healthcare over a ten-year period. Since

New initiative will see 250 extra cataract procedures in Nenagh this year and up to 10 times that next year – Minister Simon Harris

Minister for Health, Simon Harris, T.D., today (Thursday) welcomed the opening of a stand-alone high-volume consultant-led cataract theatre by the University of Limerick Hospital Group in Nenagh Hospital, as part of the Government’s Waiting List Action Plan. Minister Harris said “I am determined to tackle waiting lists. I sought a particular focus on reducing waiting

Ministers Harris and Byrne announce strengthening of the Healthy Ireland programme

New Outcomes Framework to be published, as recommended by Sláintecare Minister for Health, Simon Harris and Minister of State at the Department of Health, Catherine Byrne, today (Thursday) announced a strengthening of the Healthy Ireland programme. The Government has approved the publication of an Outcomes Framework for Healthy Ireland and the establishment of an enhanced

National Public Health Emergency Team held their 20th meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their 20th meeting today, 26th July 2018. Items discussed at the meeting included an update from the HSE Implementation Team and the latest HPSC CPE Surveillance Report which will be available online shortly. The latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory were presented

Minister for Health Simon Harris Announces Pause in the Use of Transvaginal Mesh Devices

The Minister for Health Simon Harris TD has announced today (Tuesday 24th July 2018) that the Department’s Chief Medical Officer (CMO) has requested the Health Service Executive (HSE) to pause the use of all procedures involving transvaginal mesh devices for the management of Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) or Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP) in HSE funded hospitals,

Changes to the Treatment of Farms and Businesses under the Fair Deal Scheme

The Minister of State with special responsibility for Mental Health and Older People, Mr Jim Daly TD, is pleased to announce that the Government has approved a proposal to change the treatment of farms and businesses under the Nursing Home Support Scheme, also known as the Fair Deal. A review of the Nursing Homes Support

Minister Harris welcomes the commencement of a national public consultation process by HIQA on extending the HPV vaccination programme to include boys

Minister for Health Simon Harris, today (Tuesday) welcomed the commencement of a national public consultation process by the Health Information and Quality Authority on extending the HPV vaccination programme to include boys. The HPV vaccine is currently offered to girls in their first year of secondary school. Minister Harris said, “I requested HIQA to undertake

Minister for Health launches new online information repository on Medical Cannabis

The Minister for Health Simon Harris today (Tuesday) published a new online repository of information on medical cannabis on the Department of Health’s website. The repository provides detailed information for doctors and patients on the existing Ministerial medical cannabis licence scheme, the Medical Cannabis Access Programme currently under development,  and relevant legal and policy overviews

Minister McGrath launches the report of the Task Force on Personalised Budgets

Minister McGrath today published the Report of the Task Force on Personalised Budgets “Towards Personalised Budgets for People with a Disability in Ireland”. The report sets out how personalised budgets could work as a funding mechanism for people with a disability, providing them with greater choice and control over the services and supports they receive.

The Department of Health is Moving

The Department of Health is moving location over two weekends – this weekend Friday 13th – Sunday 15th July and next weekend Friday 20th – Sunday 22nd July. All efforts are being made to maintain business as usual but there may be some disruption to normal service. With effect from Monday 23rd July the address

Statement from the Department of Health re the appointment of Laura Magahy as Executive Director of Sláintecare

The appointment of Laura Magahy as Sláintecare Executive Director follows a rigorous and competitive public application process, which was managed independently by the Public Appointments Service (PAS) on behalf of the Department of Health. The post was advertised on January 12th 2018. A national and international executive search formed past of the recruitment process, prior

Minister Harris gets Government approval for legislation which will provide for the Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy in Ireland

Minister for Health Simon Harris, today (Tuesday) received Government approval for the legislation which will provide for the Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy in Ireland, following the passing of the Referendum in May. Minister Harris said “I had committed to bringing the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Bill 2018 to Government this week and

Minister Harris encourages submissions to new expert group considering alternative mechanism to the court process for resolving clinical negligence claims

Minister for Health, Simon Harris, TD is encouraging all those with views on alternative mechanisms to the court process for resolving clinical negligence claims, to make submissions to the new Expert Group. The group, chaired by High Court Judge, Mr Justice Charles Meenan, is reviewing the law of torts and the current system for the

Government approval to publish the Children’s Health Bill 2018 – Important step on the road to making the new children’s hospital a reality

Minister for Health, Simon Harris, today announced the Government’s approval for the publication of the Children’s Health Bill 2018. The Minister said “I am very pleased that Government has approved the publication of this significant Bill. With this legislation, we take yet another important step on our way towards the new children’s hospital. I look

Minister Harris announces Government approval for Patient Safety Bill

Minister Harris announces Government approval for Patient Safety Bill which provides in law for the mandatory open disclosure of serious reportable patient safety incidents.  Bill also extends HIQA’s powers to the private sector. Minister for Health, Simon Harris, has today (Thursday) announced Government approval for the Patient Safety Bill (see link to General Scheme below). Minister

Minister Daly confirms appointment of 10 new ANP’s to mental health services

Jim Daly TD, Minister for Mental Health, held a special meeting this week (Tuesday, 3 July 2018) with the nine Chief Officers of the HSE to review existing CAMHS provision, and to see how this might be strengthened in the future. This initiative by the Minister complements the regular meetings he has with mental health specialists within the HSE.  There has been a significantly increased demand on the CAMHS service nationally since 2012. There has, for example, at local level in one area been increased funding for

4th Annual Report of the National Healthcare Quality Reporting System gives overview of our health service

Minister for Health, Simon Harris, today (Wednesday) welcomed the publication of the fourth annual report of the National Healthcare Quality Reporting System (NHQRS), which gives an overview of our health service. Minister Harris said: “Transparency and regular reporting of information on the performance of our health service is vitally important to informing decisions that service

National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services – Steering Group

The 6th meeting of the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services Steering Group was held on Friday last, the 29th June 2018. The Steering Group received a presentation on the Hospital In-Patient Enquiry (HIPE) system from the Health Pricing Office on its operation and its quality control processes. The Secretariat of the Review then provided

Minister Byrne announces €1 million in once-off funding for addiction services in Q4 of 2018

Speaking during Statements on implementing the National Drugs Strategy ‘Reducing Harm, Supporting Recovery; A health-led response to drug and alcohol use in Ireland 2017-2025’ in the Dail yesterday (28th June), the Minister of State with responsibility for the National Drugs Strategy, Catherine Byrne TD announced Government funding of €1 million for Q4 of 2018 to

Healthy Ireland Summer Campaign 2018

  Schools out and the sun is out too…… Here’s to a healthy and fun Summer together…. – Why not make this Summer one you and your family will remember forever?   There’s nothing like the buzz of a family experiencing activities, adventures and excitement together and building Summertime memories. The long school break and

New guideline launched to improve the quality and safety of treating Type 1 Diabetes

Minister for Health, Simon Harris, today (Monday) launched a new guideline aimed at improving the quality and safety of treating Type 1 Diabetes. The National Clinical Effectiveness Committee Guideline is the first to be developed in Ireland using the UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) contextualisation process; whereby a recent NICE guideline

Minister Harris signs international agreement aimed at securing affordable and timely access to new medicines for Irish patients

Minister for Health, Simon Harris, has today (Friday) signed an agreement to work with Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg to secure affordable and timely access to new medicines for Irish patients. The agreement to join the existing Beneluxa Initiative on Pharmaceutical Policy was signed at the EPSCO Council of Ministers meeting in Luxembourg. Speaking

National Public Health Emergency Team held their 19th meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their 19th meeting on Thursday 14th June 2018. Items discussed at the meeting included an update from the HSE Implementation Team and the latest HPSC CPE Surveillance Report which will be available at this link shortly. The latest figures from the National CPE Reference

Campaign underway to select Chairperson for new HSE Board

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris, has welcomed a new recruitment campaign to select a Chairperson for the new HSE Board. Minister Harris said “It’s clear that the current HSE structure does not provide adequate governance, as I outlined to the Sláintecare committee, and as has been reflected in the report. A key response to

Minister for Health publishes first findings of the Scally Inquiry into CervicalCheck and accepts important recommendations to support women

The Minister for Health Simon Harris has today (Tuesday) published the first findings of the Scally Inquiry, established into the CervicalCheck Screening Programme, and accepted their recommendations. The findings are contained in two reports provided to the Minister by Dr Gabriel Scally – a report he has completed on one of the terms of reference

An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar TD launches Healthy Ireland Summer 2018 campaign

An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD, with Minister for Health Simon Harris TD and Minister of State for Health Promotion Catherine Byrne TD, launched the Government’s Healthy Ireland Summer 2018 campaign in the Phoenix Park today. The Healthy Ireland 2018 campaign seeks to encourage people to get out and get active together this summer – whether

Minister Byrne welcomes international interest in Ireland’s Active School Flag Programme

Minister for Health Promotion Catherine Byrne today welcomed a delegation from a number of European countries to learn more about Ireland’s Active School Flag programme. The Active School Flag is an initiative of the Department of Education and Skills, supported by Healthy Ireland, and is awarded to schools that aim to achieve a physically educated

Public Consultation launched on Personal Possession of Illegal Drugs

A public consultation has today (31st May) been launched on the possession of illegal drugs for personal use. The consultation seeks the views of the public on the effectiveness of the current law and on what alternatives could be considered. The purpose of this public consultation is to inform the deliberations of a Government Working

National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services – Public Consultation

On behalf of the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services, the Department of Health has launched a public consultation today (Wednesday). The link to complete the consultation questionnaire is available at https://health.gov.ie/consultations/ and the consultation is open until 5 p.m., Friday 17th August. Responses to the consultation will help the Steering Group in making appropriate

National Public Health Emergency Team held their 18th meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their 18th meeting on Thursday 24th May 2018. Items discussed at the meeting included an update from the HSE Implementation Team. The latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory were presented to the group. In the two-week period from 7th to 20th May

Minister Harris signs order to regulate professions of Counsellor and Psychotherapist

Minister Harris has signed regulations to designate counsellor and psychotherapist as professions to be regulated under the Health and Social Care Professionals Act 2005. Minister Harris said, “the regulation of these professions will ensure greater protection of the public as those registered must comply with a code of professional conduct and ethics and will be

Minister Daly launches mid-term review of National Dementia Strategy

The Minister with Special Responsibility for Mental Health and Older People, Jim Daly, TD has launched the mid-term review of the National Dementia Strategy ahead of a meeting of the Strategy’s Monitoring Group at the Ashling Hotel, Dublin today. Minister Daly noted that good progress has been made in implementing the Strategy, which remains a

Minister Daly launches Mental Health Reform e-mental health report

The Minister of State for Mental Health, Jim Daly TD has today launched the eMental Health: State of the Art report. Welcoming today’s report launch he said, ‘As the Minister with responsibility for mental health, events like this gives me an opportunity to see new and innovative ways that technology can be utilised beneficially for

Government to establish new independent Board for the HSE

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD today received Government approval for the drafting of a Bill to establish an independent Board for the HSE. The General Scheme of the Bill is now being published. Speaking today the Minister said “the events of the past few weeks have once again made clear, there is an urgent

Statement from the Minister for Health

The Minister for Health Simon Harris has this evening (Thursday) met with the Director General of the HSE, Tony O’Brien, who informed him of his decision to step down.Minister Harris has thanked Mr O’Brien for his many years of service and dedication. “I would like to express my thanks to Tony O’Brien for his many

Statement from the Department of Health in relation to CervicalCheck

The Department is currently examining the records in relation to CervicalCheck.  A full discovery will be undertaken and all documents will be made available to the Scoping Inquiry to inform its considerations.   The HSE shared a number of documents in relation to the CervicalCheck clinical audit with the Department, including the memos made available to

National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services – Steering Group Meeting

The Steering Group for the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services met on Monday 30th April. The Secretariat of the Review provided an update to the Steering Group in relation to the various work packages that comprise the Review. The Steering Group focused its discussion on preparations for an upcoming survey of acute hospitals and

Minister Finian McGrath announces locations for €10m dedicated National Respite Programme for people with disabilities and their families

Finian McGrath TD, Minister of State with special responsibility for Disabilities, today announced where new respite facilities will be located nationally to support people with disabilities and their families. The Minister said, “This Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater

National Public Health Emergency Team held their 16th meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their 16th meeting today, 26th April 2018. Items discussed at the meeting included an update from the HSE Implementation Team. The latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory were presented to the group.  In the two-week period from 9th- 22nd April 2018, a

Government welcomes European Commission approval of Sugar-Sweetened Drinks Tax

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, Minister of State for Health Promotion Catherine Byrne TD and Minister for Finance and for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe TD, today (Tuesday) welcomed the finding of the European Commission that the upcoming sugar-sweetened drinks tax does not constitute State aid. This allows for the commencement of

Launch of Active School Week 2018 and Active School Walkway

Thursday 19th April – An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar along with Ministers Richard Bruton, Simon Harris and Catherine Byrne today welcomed Active School Week 2018 and the introduction of a new Active School Walkway initiative. Active School Week (April 23–27) offers an opportunity for schools across the country to work together with students, parents, community and

National Public Health Emergency Team holds its 15th meeting

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held its 15th meeting on the 12th April 2018. The focus of discussion at the meeting included an update from the HSE Implementation Team and the latest HPSC CPE Surveillance Report, published on 6th April, available here. The latest figures from the National CPE Reference

Ireland reaches one millionth parkrun

On Saturday morning (April 7th), participants at parks and open spaces across the country will mark Ireland’s one millionth parkrun. parkrun organise free, weekly, 5km timed runs that are open and accessible to everyone. One of the flagship initiatives supported by Healthy Ireland, parkrun Ireland began in November 2012 and is part of a global

Minister Harris launches Public Consultation on Geographical Alignment of Community Healthcare Organisations and Hospital Groups

Minister for Health Simon Harris has today (Thursday) launched a Public Consultation on the Geographical Alignment of Community Healthcare Organisations (CHOs) and Hospital Groups. The consultation, which is part of the implementation of the Sláintecare Report, is seeking views on the organisational arrangements necessary to support a model of integrated and patient-centred care. Minister Harris

National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services – Steering Group Meeting

The Steering Group for the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services met on Monday 26th March. During the meeting, the Steering Group finalised their interpretation of the scope of the Review, and agreed that a comprehensive review of all aspects of specialist cardiology services was required to make appropriate recommendations for the organisation of those

Public consultation launched on the role of voluntary organisations in publicly funded health and personal social services

On behalf of the Independent Review Group established to examine the role of voluntary organisations in publicly funded health and personal social services, the Department of Health has launched a public consultation today (26th March). Responses to the consultation will help the Independent Review Group to examine how the relationship between the State and voluntary

Minister Harris welcomes the appointment of new Chief Information Officer for the HSE

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD today (Friday) welcomed the appointment of Professor Martin Curley as the new Chief Information Officer for the Health Service Executive. Professor Curley was appointed following an open recruitment campaign conducted by the Public Appointments Service. This is a key appointment in the context of developing our eHealth infrastructure and

Regulation of the professions of counsellor and psychotherapist moves a step closer

Minister Harris welcomes the approval by the Oireachtas of the Regulations designating the professions of counsellor and psychotherapist for regulation under the Health and Social Care Professionals Act 2005   Minister for Health Simon Harris today (21 March) welcomed the fact that the regulation of the professions of counsellor and psychotherapist has moved a step

Minister McGrath welcomes World Down Syndrome Day on Wednesday 21st March 2018

The Minister of State with Special Responsibility for Disabilities, Finian McGrath TD, is pleased to recognise Wednesday 21st March as World Down Syndrome Day. World Down Syndrome Day is a global awareness day which has been celebrated all over the world since 2006. Minister Mc Grath welcomed World Down Syndrome Day, which aims to create

Statement by Simon Harris, Minister for Health, on the GP Contract

Minister for Health Simon Harris today (16 March) reaffirmed his commitment to early engagement with general practitioner representatives on the reform of the GP contract. “I want to acknowledge the important role that GPs play in our health service, and to emphasise the Government’s commitment to ensuring sustainable GP services into the future, meeting the

National Public Health Emergency Team holds 14th meeting

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their 14th meeting yesterday, 15th March 2018. The focus of discussion at the meeting was governance arrangements at an operational level in the HSE to target CPE.  The group also discussed the second monthly HPSC CPE Surveillance Report published on March 8th, available here

Minister for Health orders national review of hospital parking charges

HSE to work with patient advocacy groups to devise national guidelines The Minister for Health, Simon Harris has ordered a national review of hospital car parking charges. The Minister said “I have heard from many patients, as well as groups such as the Irish Cancer Society, in relation to car parking charges in our hospitals

Good news for Cystic Fibrosis patients and their families with the extension of ORKAMBI availability to children aged 6 – 11 years – Minister Harris

Ireland becomes one of the first countries in the European Union to provide access to ORKAMBI for children in this age category The Minister for Health, Simon Harris, has welcomed the extension of the availability of ORKAMBI to eligible children with Cystic Fibrosis, aged 6-11 years. This comes following EMA approval in January of this

Dublin wins bid to host major international conference to tackle tobacco

Dublin has been announced as the winner of a bid to host a major international conference to tackle tobacco, to be held in 2021. The announcement came at the end of the 17th World Conference on Tobacco or Health, held in South Africa. The World Conference on Tobacco or Health (WCTOH) is the premier conference

Statement from Minister for Health Simon Harris

“I want to pay tribute today to our outstanding health service staff all over the country for their incredible dedication and commitment. They are going to huge efforts to keep vital services open and ensure patients are looked after in very difficult conditions. From across Ireland I have heard stories today of health care workers

Minister for Health officially opens two new primary care centres

Ireland 2040 commits to investing €810 million in primary care over the next 10 years Minister for Health Simon Harris TD today (Monday) officially opened two new primary care centres in Kilcock, Kildare and Coolock on the northside of Dublin. Minister Harris said, “These two new centres are the latest in a planned national network

National Public Health Emergency Team held their 13th meeting today – 22 February 2018

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their 13th meeting today, 22nd February 2018. The focus of discussion at the meeting was governance arrangements at an operational level in the HSE to target CPE. The latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory were presented to the group.  In the two-week

The future of cigarette packets is here and it’s plain

Minister Catherine Byrne has welcomed the news that tobacco products bearing the new standardised packaging are now available in some Irish retail outlets. From September 2018 all cigarettes and all other tobacco products will have to be sold in plain or standardised packaging in accordance with the Public Health (Standardised Packaging of Tobacco) Act 2015.

Minister for Health joins stakeholders to formally launch A Trauma System for Ireland and confirm inclusion of trauma system capital investment in Project Ireland 2040

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris, TD, today joined patients, clinicians and other healthcare professionals at the Royal College of Physicians in Ireland to formally launch of the report of the Trauma Steering Group, A Trauma System for Ireland. Minister Harris said “This report aims to reduce the incidence and the burden of trauma and

Taskforce on Staffing and Skill Mix for Nursing achieves positive patient outcomes and a better work environment

Minister for Health visits hospital implementing the safe nurse staffing programme The Minister for Health, Simon Harris today (Thursday) visited Beaumont Hospital, one of three hospitals currently implementing the Framework for Safe Nurse Staffing and Skill Mix, led by the Chief Nursing Officer in the Department of Health, Dr Siobhan O’ Halloran. The Framework, launched

Ireland to open negotiations with Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Austria on drug pricing and supply – Minister Harris

Minister for Health, Simon Harris today (Tuesday) announced that Ireland is to open negotiations with Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Austria on drug pricing and supply. The Minister will now issue a Letter of Intent to his counterparts in those four countries formally signalling Ireland’s interest in joining the existing collaboration, known as the BeNeLuxA

Minister Harris welcomes deferral of industrial action by Section 39 workers

“I welcome the deferral of industrial action by Section 39 workers and I’m pleased that services will not be disrupted. Section 39 agencies provide vital services to often the most vulnerable in our society. I would like to thank ICTU and the trade unions for their engagement, and the Workplace Relations Commission, who played a

National Public Health Emergency Team welcomes the publication of the CPE surveillance report at their meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their twelfth meeting today, 08th February 2018. Items discussed included publication of the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) CPE surveillance report, the latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory and an update on HSE communications plans. The National Public Health Emergency Team welcomed

Minister for Health marks World Cancer Day

Ireland’s survival rates for cancer patients have improved significantly – latest figures published by The Lancet Public Health Alcohol Bill to return to the Oireachtas this week The Minister for Health, Simon Harris has stressed the importance of taking steps, as a society, to prevent cancer. The Minister was marking World Cancer Day, which takes

National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services – First meeting of Steering Group

The Steering Group for the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services met today, 31st January. The National Review, which is chaired by Professor Philip Nolan, President of Maynooth University, will seek to advance a modern, safe cardiac service for the Irish adult citizen. The focus of today’s agenda was on establishing the work programme of

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held 11th meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their eleventh meeting today, 25th January 2018. The focus of the agenda and items discussed included enhanced surveillance of CPE and the latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory. The National Public Health Emergency Team identified that surveillance of CPE at a national

Good news for children and teenagers with diabetes – approval given to reimburse blood glucose management system Freestyle Libre – Harris

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD today welcomed the HSE’s decision to reimburse Freestyle Libre for children and young adults Speaking today, Minister Harris said “Almost 190,000 people in Ireland have diabetes.  This is a chronic disease that takes a lot of management, but we have made huge strides in treating and managing diabetes here

New online service to apply for a Medical Card is quick and easy – Minister Harris

Minister for Health Simon Harris has said today (Monday) that the new online service to apply for a Medical Card is quick and easy. www.medicalcard.ie was launched today Minister Harris said “This new service enables people for the first time to apply online for a Medical Card quickly and easily, using the HSE’s step by

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held 10th meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their tenth meeting today, 11 January 2018. The focus of the agenda and items discussed included the status of implementation of specific screening requirements across the Hospital Groups, an update from the Expert Group and the latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory.

Statement on behalf of Minister Simon Harris following today’s meeting of the ED Taskforce

“This afternoon I met with members of the Emergency Department Taskforce to discuss the current pressure being experienced in EDs across the country and the exceptional measures being taken to alleviate this. It’s unacceptable that patients are experiencing very difficult conditions in our EDs. However, we are beginning to see an impact from the exceptional

Statement from Minister Harris

“Today I held a teleconference with the chief executives of the country’s hospital groups to discuss the overcrowding and the very difficult conditions for patients and staff. I thanked them for their work and that of their staff, and stressed the importance of having clinical decision makers in place in hospitals at key times to

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held their 9th meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their ninth meeting today, 04 January 2018. The focus of the agenda and items discussed included an update from the Implementation Team, the membership and work of the Expert Group and the latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory. The Implementation Team updated

Statement from Minister Simon Harris

“I want to recognise again the intense efforts of all our staff across the health service and the very difficult conditions patients experience at this time of high pressure in our emergency departments. “I met again today with senior staff in my own Department and continue to be regularly updated by senior officials in the

Statement from Minister Harris

“Firstly thank you to everyone working in the health service today in difficult circumstances. I want them and our patients to know that no effort or resource is being spared to improve this situation. We are entering a difficult few weeks and our health services are experiencing extra pressure because of the flu season. Traditionally

New Year’s Day reduction in cost of medication for families – Minister Harris

  · 500,000 families to see prescription charges reduced · €120 saving for families as threshold for Drug Payment Scheme reduced   Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, has announced that Budget Day reductions in the cost of medicine for families kick in today. Minister Harris said “as part of Budget 2018 I was delighted

Record Numbers of Organ Donors and Organ Transplants as Milestone of 300 transplants reached in 2017 Large Majority support planned opt-out system – Minister Harris publishes Report on the Public Consultation for a proposed Human Tissue Bill

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD today (Friday) announced a record number of organ donor and transplantation figures for 2017. This is the first year in which the milestone of 300 organ transplants has been reached. Minister Harris said “I am heartened that 2017 marked our highest annual transplant performance and saw 308 transplants carried

Department of Health publishes Health in Ireland Key Trends 2017

The Department of Health has today (Thursday) published the 10th edition of Health in Ireland: Key Trends 2017. Health in Ireland Key Trends gives us an insight into trends for demographics, population health, hospital and primary care, health service employment and expenditure. In this 2017 report, trends from the last decade highlight significant achievements that

Minister Byrne welcomes results of study on problem opiate use in Ireland highlighting a reduction in the number of young people commencing opiate use

Minister of State with responsibility for Health Promotion and the National Drugs Strategy, Catherine Byrne, TD welcomed the results of a study of opiate use in Ireland for the period 2011- 2014, which indicates that overall prevalence rates of problem opiate use in Ireland remain stable and that fewer young people are starting to use

Publication of Sixth Strategic Review of Medical Training and Career Structure – (MacCraith) Progress Report

Minister for Health Simon Harris today (Friday) welcomed the publication of the Sixth Strategic Review of Medical Training and Career Structure (MacCraith) Progress Report. The report, from the MacCraith Implementation Monitoring Group, highlights the implementation of many of the recommendations made by the Strategic Review Working Group in 2013–2014. The recruitment and retention of medical

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE publish situational analysis today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) published their first situational analysis report today, 21 December 2017. The group also held their eighth meeting today. The situational analysis report provides an overview of the information gathered via the National Public Health Emergency Team process to date. It includes background information, the key

Minister for Health welcomes publication of HSE National Service Plan 2018

Increases in Respite and Home Support Hours, Speech and Language Therapy, Community Intervention Team referrals and Paediatric Homecare Packages Improved access to Mental Health Services, Drug and Alcohol Treatment Services and Maternity services, including Anomaly Scans Focus on cutting Waiting Lists and improving Access to Hospital Services Value Improvement Programme to be set up Minister

It’s important that the report of the Joint Committee on the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution is now given full consideration – Minister Harris

Minister for Health Simon Harris has welcomed the publication of the report of the Joint Committee on the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution today (Wednesday), and stressed the need for its recommendations to now be given full consideration. The Joint Committee on the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution, chaired by Senator Catherine Noone, was established

Minister Harris welcomes establishment of Independent Review Group examining the removal of private practice from public hospitals

Public consultation launched to hear the views of stakeholders The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today (Thursday) welcomed the holding of the first meeting of the Independent Review Group to examine the removal of private practice from public acute hospitals. He has also announced the opening of a public consultation and encouraged submissions from

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held their seventh meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their seventh meeting today, 14 December 2017. The agenda and discussions focused on the current situational analysis, the HSE’s actions to respond to patients at risk and the latest figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory. It was recognised that since the first meeting

Minister Catherine Byrne welcomes the introduction of Physical Education as an Examinable Subject for the Leaving Certificate in September 2018

The Minister for Health Promotion, Catherine Byrne, has welcomed the announcement by An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar and the Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton this week that Physical Education is to be introduced as an examinable subject for the Leaving Certificate in September, 2018. The new Leaving Certificate PE (LCPE) curriculum will be available

New National Adult Safeguarding Policy to be developed for the health sector

A new National Adult Safeguarding Policy is to be developed for the health sector, after Government granted approval for the move yesterday. The safety and protection of vulnerable people is a key objective of Government and society. The Government’s decision acknowledges the need to build further on the existing range of policies, procedures, codes of

Minister Harris announces significant Patient Safety Progress – Approval of the General Scheme of the Patient Safety (Licensing) Bill

Minister for Health Simon Harris TD today received Government approval for the drafting of the Patient Safety (Licensing) Bill.   The General Scheme of the Bill is now being referred to the Oireachtas Committee on Health for pre-legislative scrutiny Speaking today, Minister Harris said “The aim of this licensing legislation is to ensure that hospital

Health Ministers Announce New Supports for Carers & People with Disabilities

–        GP Visit Cards for all in receipt of carers allowance –        €10 million extra for respite care The Government today agreed new health service measures that will have a positive impact on the lives of people with disabilities and their carers.  Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, the

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held their sixth meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their sixth meeting today, 07 December 2017. The agenda and discussions focused on the findings from the assessment of infection prevention and control and antimicrobial stewardship governance arrangements at Hospital Group and Community Health Organisation level, an update on the work of the Expert

Minister for Health and Minister for Health Promotion mark World AIDS Day

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris and the Minister for Health Promotion, Catherine Byrne have said that increased education, awareness, prevention, testing and treatment are needed if we are to meet the challenges of HIV. The Ministers were speaking on World AIDS Day. Minister Harris said “A lot of good work has been done implementing

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held their fifth meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their fifth meeting today, 30 November 2017. The agenda and discussions focused on questions for the Expert Group, the enhanced implementation structures the HSE are putting in place and communication with stakeholders. The meeting also considered an update on the numbers of patients affected.

Minister for Health announces chair of National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today (Thursday) announced that Professor Philip Nolan, NUI Maynooth, has agreed to chair the National Review of Specialist Cardiac Services. Professor Nolan will lead the National Review Steering Committee consisting of patients, relevant health professionals, senior HSE management and senior departmental officials. The work of the group will

Minister Finian McGrath announces €4.5m fund to reform disability services

Minister Finian McGrath announces €4.5m fund to reform disability services Minister of State with special responsibility for Disabilities, Finian McGrath TD, today announced a €4.5m fund to support the reform of disability services. The Minister said, “This Government’s objective is to deliver disability services that are person –centred, putting those who need supports at the

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held their fourth meeting today

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their fourth meeting today, 23 November 2017. The HSE’s National Clinical Lead for HCAI and AMR, Professor Martin Cormican presented the latest CPE figures from the National CPE Reference Laboratory. The group discussed, the threefold increase in the number of cases of CPE reported

Minister Jim Daly announces €9m in grants to reform mental health services

Minister of State at the Department of Health with special responsibility for Mental Health and Older People, Jim Daly TD today (23rd November 2017) announced that €9m has been awarded in grants to support the reform of mental health services. The Minister said, “The vision for this funding is to help achieve recovery-orientated mental health

Ministers Harris and Byrne publish 2016 Annual Report of Tobacco Free Ireland Action Plan

Standardised packaging measures being rolled out for all tobacco products The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, and Minister of State for Health Promotion and the National Drug Strategy, Catherine Byrne TD, have today welcomed the publication of the 2016 Annual Report on the Tobacco Free IrelandAction Plan. Tobacco Free Irelandwas launched under the Healthy

Statement from Minister for Health in relation to consultant contracts and issues highlighted by last night’s RTE Investigates programme

The Minister for Health has criticised the failure of some hospital consultants to comply with their contracts and deliver their work commitment to the public hospital system, as highlighted by RTE last night. Minister Harris said: “I can only describe the behaviour highlighted by last night’s RTE Investigates programme, as brazen, immoral and unfair. Some

Minister for Health marks European Antibiotic Awareness Day

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD today (Saturday 18th November 2017) acknowledged European Antibiotic Awareness Day as part of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) World Antibiotic Awareness Week and welcomed Ireland’s continuing active engagement in this important initiative. The Minister noted that European Antibiotic Awareness Day has been a very successful event across Europe

Dublin Declaration unanimously adopted at the Fourth Global Forum on Human Resources for Health

Dublin, Friday November 17: Concrete actions to address a projected shortfall of 18 million health workers were announced today at the Fourth Global Forum on Human Resources for Health, where representatives of over 70 countries also unanimously adopted the Dublin Declaration. The Dublin Declaration is a multisectoral and multi-stakeholder declaration for improved governance, strategic investments

National Public Health Emergency Team on CPE held their third meeting today during World Antibiotic Week

The National Public Health Emergency Team on Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) held their third meeting today, 16 November 2017. CPE is a superbug resistant to most or all antibiotics.  This week, from 13-19 November, marks World Antibiotic Week. The Director General of the World Health Organization has emphasised that antibiotic or antimicrobial resistance is a global

Minister Daly launches annual ‘Technology and Wellbeing’ conference

Jim Daly TD, Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People, today launched the joint Mental Health Reform and ReachOut Ireland ‘Technology and Wellbeing’ conference in The  Hilton, Charlemont Place, Dublin. The Minister said “We are living in a fast changing information age where technology plays a significant role in society. Our smartphones and

Statement by Minister McGrath on the Interim Report of The Commission of Investigation (Certain matters relative to a disability service in the South East and related matters)

The Minister for Disabilities Finian McGrath TD today welcomed the Interim Report of The Commission of Investigation (Certain matters relative to a disability service in the South East and related matters), which was established on 21 st March 2017. The terms of reference of the Commission are available to view at http://health.gov.ie/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Commission-of-Investigation-Terms-of-Reference-FINAL.pdf Part II a) (i)

Key Patient Safety Milestone as Open Disclosure Provisions Complete Passage through Oireachtas – Minister Harris

Minister welcomes passage of the Civil Liability (Amendment) Bill  Part 4 of which provides for open disclosure. The Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today welcomed the passing of the Civil Liability (Amendment Bill) 2017 on its return to the Seanad. Minister Harris said “Patient safety and quality are at the heart of our health services and it is important

Minister Harris calls for innovative transformation of the health workforce

Calling for innovation to expand and transform the health workforce, Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today officially opened the Fourth Global Forum on Human Resources for Health (http://hrhforum2017.ie). The world is facing an estimated shortfall of up to 18 million health workers by 2030, primarily in low and lower-middle income countries, while in the

Minister Harris opens First National Palliative Care Seminar in Farmleigh

Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD, today opened the First National Palliative Care Seminar in Farmleigh, Dublin. The Seminar was focused on the implementation of two published National Clinical Guidelines, The Pharmacological Management of Cancer Pain in Adults and Management of Constipation in Adult Patients Receiving Palliative Care which were approved by the National Clinical

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