2,843 Children to benefit from free GP care in Dublin Central – Costello

17 October 2013

by Cllr Joe Costello

Approximately 2,843 children in Dublin Central are to benefit from the roll-out of free GP care, which was announced in this week’s Budget, according to Labour Minister Joe Costello.

“I am pleased to confirm that approximately 2,843 extra children in Dublin Central will be eligible for free GP care when it is rolled out, based on the latest Census data. This is a historic and significant initiative that means that local families with children aged five and under no longer have to give a second’s thought about visiting the doctor when their child gets sick.

“After years of making sacrifices to help stabilise the country, it is only fair that hard-pressed families in Dublin Central get something back from this Government. The roll-out of free GP care, along with other initiatives such as book rental schemes for every primary school in Ireland, is a clear example of how the Government is trying to make a tangible difference to people’s lives and circumstances.

“I commend my colleague, Labour Minister Alex White, for championing this particular issue at the Cabinet table for many months, and I hope that families in the locality can reap the benefits when the measure comes into effect in the second half of next year.

“There is clear evidence that people delay or avoid visiting their GP where a fee is required. Removing this cost barrier will mean that local families will be far more likely to address  medical problems at an earlier stage, leading to better outcomes and treatment that is of less cost to the State.

“The Labour Party has long been campaigning for the principle of universal access to GP care and this is the first step. I am pleased that a Labour Minister has delivered this historic public health initiative that not only reforms our health service but also gives back to families.”