Irish Medical Organisation

GPs respond to delay on extension of free GP Visit Cards to under sixes.

Call to prioritise sick children

Thursday 19th June 2014. The GP Committee of the IMO has called on the Government for a fundamental review of proposals to extend GP Visit Cards to all children under the age of six regardless of medical condition. The Government announced today (Thurs) that the introduction of such cards would not now occur this Summer as planned and would be deferred until the Autumn.

Speaking today Dr. Ray Walley, Chairman of the GP Committee of the IMO welcomed this move. He said “there was a risk that the Government was rushing to make a decision rather than making sure they made the correct decision. We’ve already seen with medical cards that that is a bad way to make policy and typically leads to serious mistakes. We call on the Government now to reassess the whole issue and to give priority to children who are sick rather than on the basis of their age; “This week the Government acknowledged that discretionary medical cards should be decided on the basis of health issues not means. The same approach should inform the extension of GP Visit Cards…if resources are limited make these scarce cards available to children with medical issues not simply to all Children under the age of six.”


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