Clinical News

Harris commits to MacCraith and GP contract talks

By November 15, 2016 No Comments

Health Minister, Simon Harris, is committed to the full implementation of the MacCraith recommendations to support the recruitment and rentention of doctors who undergo their training here. The Minister also made it clear that he sees preparations for the next phase of discussions on a GP contract, which are already underway, as a key priority in the months ahead.
Speaking exclusively to Irish Medical News, he said his department was examining all aspects of the medical indemnity caps scheme in conjunction with the State Claims Agency and would provide a report to Government on the issue by the end of the year. The Minister believed a particular priority for government was to meet a greater proportion of the care needs of people with chronic conditions in primary care and says the €75 million in the NTPF for 2017 and 2018 will specifically use all the resources across the health service, public and private, to drive In the interview around the 200-day mark in Office, the Minister stressed the need to have a long-term strategy agreed by political consensus “and I hope societal consensus,” and added that it was his aim “to make the consensus real.” Mr. Harris claimed that there needed to be a radical rethink about how we looked at health to meet the challenge of increased demand from a growing and ageing population. He said it was now time to begin some significant new developments that in time could deliver real improvements for patients on waiting lists, children with disabilities and older people. Another aspect he stressed was the “decisive shift within the health service towards primary care. He said he believed that it was in this area “where the vast majority of healthcare needs can be addressed at the most appropriate level of complexity and at least cost.” The Minister explained that while the sort of change he wanted was challenging, it was not primarily about adding money. “It requires a level of collaboration and innovation so that we organise the services around people and their needs than requiring them to fit in with how the services are organised.”

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