147. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a medical appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 52402/17 asked on 07 Dec 2017 - Hospital Appointments Administration)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The scheduling of appointments for patients is a matter for the hospital to which...

163. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a hospital appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 52515/17 asked on 07 Dec 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The scheduling of appointments for patients is a matter for the hospital to which...

539. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the reason former members of the Defence Forces did not receive a centenary medal to commemorate the 1916 Rising; if the medal will be awarded to persons that served within the centenary; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 51511/17 asked on 05 Dec 2017 - Commemorative Medals)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): The Programme for Government provided for the award of a commemorative medal to all Defence Forces personnel, Permanent and Reserve, who were recorded as being in service in the course of 2016. This was a special acknowledgement from the Government to the members of Óglaigh na hÉireann, both Permanent and Reserve, who served during the centenary year of 2016. The 1916 Centenary Commemorative Medal was awarded as a commemorativ...

168. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health if the HSE quota of the dispensary of medical stockings can be raised from two to four in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 51372/17 asked on 30 Nov 2017 - Medicinal Products Supply)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): As this is a service matter, it has been referred to the Health Service Executive for direct reply to the Deputy. 
 ...

347. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a hospital appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48918/17 asked on 21 Nov 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The National Waiting List Management Policy, A standardised approach to managing...

140. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will address a matter in relation to a grant application by persons (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 47625/17 asked on 14 Nov 2017 - Student Grant Scheme Applications)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I understand that the students to which the Deputy refers, have exhausted their statutory based appeals within SUSI and to the independent Student Grants Appeals Board. The Deputy will appreciate that it would be inappropriate for me to comment on the outcome of individual cases within this statutory appeals process. 
With regard to the general issue of assessment of income under the Student Grants Scheme, the rates of grant and the inc...

306. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health the amount of funding allocated to an organisation (details supplied) in each of the years 2013 to 2016; the locations in which this funding has been distributed; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 47803/17 asked on 14 Nov 2017 - Disability Services Funding)

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality ...

333. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health the reason Versatis patches are not covered by a person’s (details supplied) medical card; the reason they did not receive notification of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48064/17 asked on 14 Nov 2017 - Medicinal Products Reimbursement)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Medicines play a vital role in improving the health of Irish patients. Securing access to existing and new and innovative medicines is a key objective of the health service. However, the challenge is to do this in an affordable and sustainable manner. The medicines bill for the community drugs schemes – primarily the GMS, Long Term Illness and Drugs Payment schemes and the High Tech Arrangement – is forecast at just over €1.7 billion in 2017. 
To en...

88. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Finance if he will address a matter (details supplied) regarding VAT and excise. (Question 47168/17 asked on 08 Nov 2017 - Alcohol Pricing)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): I believe the issue the Deputy is referring to is that of below cost selling of alcohol products. 
The remit of my Department extends to the taxation placed on alcohol products. The issue of below cost selling is a matter in the first instance for my colleague the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation. 
The prohibition on below cost selling was removed when the Groceries Order was abolished in 2006 by the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and...

154. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health the status of stroke unit services available in Dundalk and Drogheda, County Louth, due to the higher volumes of stroke patients in these areas; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 47212/17 asked on 08 Nov 2017 - Stroke Care)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): In response to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to the Deputy directly.
 ...

161. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health his plans to consider funding the drug Kuvan for persons suffering from phenylketonuria; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 47270/17 asked on 08 Nov 2017 - Medicinal Products Reimbursement)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): The HSE has statutory responsibility for decisions on pricing and reimbursement of medicines under the community drug schemes, in accordance with the Health (Pricing and Supply of Medical Goods) Act 2013.
In reaching a decision, the HSE examines all the evidence which may be relevant in its view for the decision and will take into account such expert opinions and recommendations which may have been sought by the HSE, including, for example, advice from ...

736. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health the status of an appointment for a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46432/17 asked on 07 Nov 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The scheduling of appointments for patients is a matter for the hospital to whic...

967. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the amount that is paid per kilowatt per hour for solar power; if there is a tariff; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 45825/17 asked on 07 Nov 2017 - Renewable Energy Feed in Tariff Scheme)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): Current financial supports for renewable electricity projects in Ireland are provided via the Renewable Electricity Feed-In-Tariff (REFIT) schemes, which support renewable electricity generated and exported into the national grid. Renewable technologies supported under the REFIT schemes include Onshore Wind, Hydro, Biomass Landfill Gas, Biomass Combustion, Biomass CHP and Anaerobic Digestion CHP. At present, S...

272. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a hospital appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44974/17 asked on 24 Oct 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
In relation to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have a...

386. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a hospital appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43920/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The National Waiting List Management Policy, A standardised approach to managing...

155. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health the reason a person’s (details supplied) echocardiogram appointments are being rearranged on a regular basis; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42111/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - Hospital Appointments Administration)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): The National Waiting List Management Policy, A standardised approach to managing scheduled care treatment for in-patient, day case and planned procedures, January 2014, has been developed to ensure that all administrative, managerial and clinical staff follow an agreed national minimum standard for the management and administration of waiting lists for scheduled care. This policy, which has been adopted by the HSE, sets out the processes that hospitals ...

341. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a hospital appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 40486/17 asked on 26 Sep 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The scheduling of appointments is a matter for the hospital to which the patient...

342. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health the reason persons are now required to pay for the haemochromatosis clinic in Louth County Council (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 40487/17 asked on 26 Sep 2017 - Health Services Charges)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): As this is a service matter, the Health Service Executive has been asked to examine this matter and to reply to the Deputy as soon as possible.
 ...

71. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Finance his views on a matter (details supplied) regarding the local property tax; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 40011/17 asked on 21 Sep 2017 - Property Tax Exemptions)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): Revenue has advised me that the Local Property Tax (LPT) ‘unfinished housing estate’ exemption is only available for properties that are located within a housing estate, or part of an estate,  that was prescribed as ‘unfinished’, by the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government in Statutory Instrument (SI) No. 91 of 2013.
Before claiming the ‘unfinished housing estate’ exemption it is very important that property owners ensure t...

212. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the reason the rate of PRSI for the self-employed (details supplied) has changed; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 39952/17 asked on 21 Sep 2017 - Social Insurance Payments)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): Self-employed people who earn €5,000 or more in a contribution year are liable for PRSI at the class S rate of 4%, subject to a minimum annual payment of €500. This provides them with access to a range of social insurance benefits including state pension (contributory) and widow’s, widower’s or surviving civil partner’s pension (contributory), guardian’s payment (contributory), maternity benefit, adoptive benefit an...

110. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Finance if business owners will be able to claim VAT back on car petrol usage in budget 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 37056/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Budget 2018)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): As the Deputy will be aware, it is a longstanding practice of the Minister for Finance not to comment, in advance of the Budget, on any tax matters that might be the subject of Budget decisions.
 ...

815. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (details supplied) will receive a hospital appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 36999/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The National Waiting List Management Policy, A standardised approach to managing...

848. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Health when a person (detailed supplied) will receive a hospital appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 37092/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Hospital Appointments Status)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Under the Health Act 2004, the Health Service Executive (HSE) is required to manage and deliver, or arrange to be delivered on its behalf, health and personal social services. Section 6 of the HSE Governance Act 2013 bars the Minister for Health from directing the HSE to provide a treatment or a personal service to any individual or to confer eligibility on any individual.
The National Waiting List Management Policy, A standardised approach to managing...

1295. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the reason the record for a person (details supplied) cannot be recognised in each of the years 2006 to 2016 and to date in 2017 under the Dundalk cockle Natura permits policy; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 36838/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Fishing Industry)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): The qualifying criteria for eligibility for a fisheries Natura permit to fish for cockles in Dundalk Bay is set down in the Dundalk Cockle Natura Permits Policy 2016-2020. This policy is available at the website www.fishingnet.ie, the Government’s commercial sea-fishing network portal.
Under the heading “Cockle dredge fishery”, point 2 of the policy states: “Permits will normally be issued in the first instance to ‘priority g...

1782. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if there will be changes to sick pay in the next budget; if she will examine the case of a person (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 37151/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Illness Benefit Reform)

Minister of State at the Department of Social Protection (Deputy Finian McGrath): Illness Benefit is a payment for people who cannot work due to illness and who satisfy the pay related social insurance (PRSI) contribution conditions. One of the PRSI conditions is that a person must have a minimum of 39 reckonable contributions paid or credited in the governing contribution year. Claims made in 2017 are governed by the 2015 tax year, and only PRSI Classes A, E, H, and P are reckonable for Illnes...