The financial burden on families with children in hospital will be reduced with the slashing of overnight and in-patient hospital charges, a Fine Gael TD has said.
The Government has approved legislation which will remove the existing statutory in-patient charge of €80 per night for all children under 16 years old across public hospitals.
Deputy Colm Burke, Fine Gael Health Spokesperson, said, “Fine Gael is focusing on reducing the burden on families with children in hospital, as we know there are huge logistical and financial costs for many parents.
“Having a child in hospital is traumatic and difficult both for the patient and their families, but we have been working hard to implement positive changes to help in these situations.
“The removal of hospital charges for all under 16 year olds will be a massive relief for parents across the country. This change, when implemented, will mean that cost should not be a major consideration for any young person or their family when considering the need for medical care.
“Ultimately, this legislation will result in easier access, affordability and better quality healthcare for our children.
“Fine Gael has been listening to and meeting with parents of children in hospital. My colleagues, Deputy Jennifer Carroll MacNeill and Cllr Vicki Casserly, have first-hand experience themselves and have worked tirelessly to bring about change. Just last week, Fine Gael Minister Heather Humphreys introduced a change to the Carer’s Allowance which Deputy Carroll MacNeill and Cllr Casserly pushed for in Budget 2022.
“We’ve also been campaigning on a number of other supports to help families – better coordination of hospital appointments, increased welfare supports, as well as today’s announcement of the removal of hospital charges.
“Our work is by no means over, and we will continue to work hard for parents with children in hospital. However, this new legislation is evidence that Fine Gael and the Government are removing barriers and reducing costs to ensure the best possible healthcare for our children.”