Public inpatient charges for U16s abolished

Daily charge of €80 will no longer apply

Deborah Condon

September 21, 2022

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  • Public inpatient charges for children under the age of 16 have been abolished in all pubic hospitals.

    The Health (Miscellaneous Provisions) (No.2) Act 2022 removes the acute public inpatient charge of €80 per day, including day case charges, for children under the age of 16 in all public hospitals.

    Following enactment of the legislation before the summer recess, the Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, has now signed the commencement order providing for the removal of charges from September 21. 

    Until now, all public patients, including children, were subject to a statutory public inpatient charge of €80 per night, up to a maximum of 10 nights (€800) in a 12-month period. Medical card holders and other certain specific classes of persons were exempt from these charges.

    Legislative amendments were required to the Health Act 1970 to abolish the public inpatient charge for children under 16 years of age. Funding was provided in Budget 2022 for measures to alleviate the financial burden of statutory hospital charges incurred for children accessing care in a public hospital.

    According to Minister Donnelly, this change “is focused towards easing the financial burden of parents or guardians when bringing their child to hospital for inpatient care”.

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