Irish Medical Organisation

IMO Statement on Minister’s proposals for Under 5s

 Statement by Irish Medical Organisation

  • Free GP care for under-5s another example of Government talking but not doing
  • “Extraordinary” that IMO has not been consulted over plans

Tuesday 6th August 2013. The Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) has expressed serious concerns at media reports that the Government is preparing to introduce free GP care for under-fives this year despite making no contact with the IMO on what would be a major change in the way GP services operate.

Dr. Ray Walley, Chairman of the GP Committee of the IMO, said it is “extraordinary” that there has been no communication from the Government on the proposal.

“There are no proposals in relation to resourcing this service – this seems like another political statement with no rationale behind it. The Government seems to want credit for introducing this service without even discussing the matter with the very people who have to provide it,” said Dr Walley.

“This would be a major policy change and a fundamental change to the terms of the GMS and we find it extraordinary that the Minister for Health has not spoken to the IMO, as the representative body of GPs.”

Dr Walley said the IMO is very concerned that patient expectations are being raised at a time when resources behind the existing service are stretched to capacity. “The Government is cutting back spending on existing services yet it is signalling plans for new services without any indication where the resources to provide them will come from,” he said.

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