Dáil Éireann - Volume 630 - 31 January, 2007

Written Answers. - Nursing Education.

[636] Mr. P. McGrath asked the Minister for Health and Children if there is grant aid available from her Department or the Health Service Executive for nurses who have previously obtained their primary degrees in nursing and who wish to further their studies to masters level. [1457/07]

  Ms Harney: There is no funding available from my Department for nurses who have previously obtained their primary degree in nursing and who wish to further their studies to master level. Responsibility for the funding of nursing education is now the responsibility of the Health Service Executive (HSE).

In 2006 arrangements for the transfer of midwifery and children’s nursing to the third level sector were agreed. Under these arrangements nurse teachers teaching on those programmes at the time of the transfer and who had registered to undertake a masters degree before the commencement of the academic year 2006/07 are entitled to have their fees paid in full by the HSE. This arrangement also applied previously to nurse teachers employed in the general, psychiatric and intellectual disability schools of nursing when those programmes transferred to the third level sector in 2002.

The payment of fees for Masters degree courses for all other nurses is not the subject of a national initiative but is a matter for individual employers. In this context my Department has requested the Parliamentary Affairs Division of the Executive to arrange to have the matter investigated and to have a reply issued directly to the Deputy.