Health Minister welcomes the abolition of public hospital in-patient Charges

by Rose Barrett
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Hospital waiting room

Minister for Health. Stephen Donnelly has announced that, with effect from today (Monday, April 17), public in-patient charges have been abolished in all public hospitals.

The Health (Amendment) Act 2023 removes the acute public in-patient charge of €80 per day, up to a maximum of €800 in a year (including day-case charges) for people accessing care as a public patient in all public hospitals. Following the enactment of the legislation, the Minister for Health signed the Commencement Order providing for the removal of charges from today.

Minister Donnelly said: “I am delighted to announce that from today, people will no longer be charged when accessing public inpatient care in our public hospitals.

“This legislation removes the existing financial burden of public inpatient charges when accessing care in a public hospital. The removal of these charges, announced as part of Budget 2023, is an important step towards reducing the healthcare costs of patients and families.

“This measure builds on the abolition of public in-patient charges for children, which I introduced last year, and is another significant step in ensuring that people have access to affordable healthcare services.”

Primary legislation was needed to set out the legislative amendments required to the Health Act 1970 to abolish the public in-patient charge.

Funding was provided in Budget 2023 to abolish the acute public in-patient charge for patients in public hospitals. The Health (Amendment) Act 2023 removes the acute public in-patient charge of €80 per day for people accessing care as a public patient in public hospitals. This measure commences with effect from 17 April 2023.

The acute public in-patient charge of €80 per day for children under 16 years of age was removed from September 21 2022.

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