Dáil Éireann - Volume 503 - 20 April, 1999
Written Answers. - Medical Cards.
Ms Clune Ms Clune
 328. Ms Clune asked the Minister for Health and Children further to Parliamentary Questions Nos. 9 and 40 of 29 January 1998 the progress that has been made with this review of medial card eligibility for the elderly and large families; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9612/99]
Mr. Cowen Mr. Cowen
Minister for Health and Children (Mr. Cowen): The Government identified in its programme An Action Programme for the Millennium the need to review medical card eligibility for the elderly and large families. I am pleased to say that the Government has decided the income guidelines for entitlement to medical cards for persons aged 70 years or over should be doubled. This improvement, which is being introduced over a three year period, began on 1 March 1999. The income guidelines for those aged 70 to 79 and 80 years and over, which were already higher than the guidelines for younger age groups, have increased by one third and there will be similar increases in 2000 and 2001. A table setting out the medical card guidelines which came into effect from 1 March of this year will be forwarded to the Deputy.
In relation to the review of eligibility for medical cards of large families, my Department is still considering this issue in conjunction with health board chief executive officers.
Dáil Éireann 503 Written Answers. Medical Cards.