Dáil Éireann - Volume 476 - 25 March, 1997
Written Answers. - Dental Service.
Dr. Moffatt Dr. Moffatt
27. Dr. Moffatt asked the Minister for Health the progress, if any, which has been made on the  dental plan for medical card holders since its launch in 1994; if the moneys projected for expenditure in an incremental fashion have been expended; and his views on whether the service has come to a standstill, except for emergency services. [7762/97]
Minister for Health (Mr. Noonan, Limerick East) Michael Noonan
Minister for Health (Mr. Noonan, Limerick East): The dental treatment services scheme for adults with medical card entitlement is one component of the dental health action plan.
In the initial phase of the scheme, which commenced on 1 November 1994, emergency dental treatment was made available to all adults. Routine dental treatment and priority full denture treatment was made available to persons 65 years of age or older.
Under the second phase of the scheme, which commenced on 1 June 1996, routine dental treatment was extended to persons in the 16-34 year age group and full denture treatment was extended to all edentulous persons.
In 1997 my Department provided an additional £4 million to health boards for the development of the scheme. A total of £15.5 million is now available to health boards annually for the scheme.
The significant level of funding now being provided together with the excercise of more effective control on the emergency element of the scheme will enable health boards to put in place service plans for dealing effectively with existing waiting lists for routine and full denture treatment.
Dáil Éireann 476 Written Answers. Dental Service.