155,165 registered members
138 extra GPs enter medical card scheme
[Posted: Thu 16/08/2012 by Niall Hunter, Editor www.irishhealth.com]
A total of 138 GPs have so far joined the medical card scheme since restrictions on newly-qualified GPs treating medical card patients were lifted back in March, according to the HSE.
Prior to the lifting of restrictions, fully trained GPs could only enter the scheme if existing medical card GP posts became vacant, or after serving as assistants to medical card GPs.
Now, any GP who satisfies training and qualification requirements can 'set up shop' as a GP in a particular area.
Health Minister James Reilly said the move would encourage more young GPs to remain in Ireland and it would make it more attractive for GPs to move here from overseas. It would also encourage competition among GPs, he said.
The HSE told irishhealth.com as at August 10, 138 GPs had entered the medical card scheme since restrictions were lifted in March.
The largest number of new GPs taking up medical card contracts haw been in the Cork-North Lee area, which has had 14 new GPs entering the scheme, followed by Galway, with 12.
Eleven new GPs have taken up duty in Dublin north-central, while nine have entered the medical card scheme in north county Dublin and four have entered the scheme in Dublin north-west. North Dublin has for some time been suffering from a GP shortage.
However, no new medical card GPs have taken up duty in Donegal, Dublin west, Roscommon or Sligo/Leitrim since the restrictions were lifted nearly six months ago.
The lifting of medical card work restrictions on newly-qualified GPs was included as a condition in Ireland's 'troika' bail-out agreement.
|nurse12 Posted: 19/08/2012 12:47|
Any chance that could result in a GP visit being more affordable for those without medical cards? At 50 euro a visit, it's becoming unaffordable to many especially if you have young kids.
|cannylass Posted: 21/08/2012 13:08|
Like a lot of my friends - I ( with hubby and child) dont qualify for a medical card because i'm over the threshold but if we need to go to the doc at €60 a visit we have to think very hard about it as we can't afford it - same goes for dental treatment etc. We do not have spare cash for anything now.
Like myself, my friends dread anything like a doc/ dentist bill or car repairs etc as they are just barely managing to pay the regular bills.
I was in outpatients in a hospital lately and i was asked did i have a medical card or private health insurance - my answer is that i'm suposedly too rich for one and definitely too poor to afford the other :(.
|To join the discussion, register by clicking here|