Minister Harris commends Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Healthcare as it concludes unprecedented cross-party effort
Minister for Health, Simon Harris TD today (30th May) acknowledged the conclusion and publication of the final report of the cross-party Oireachtas Committee on the Future of Healthcare.
The establishment of the cross-party Committee in June 2016 was one of the first actions arising from the Programme for a Partnership Government. The Committee was tasked with devising cross-party agreement on a long term vision for healthcare and the direction of health policy over a 10 year period.
Speaking today, Minister Harris said : "One of the first actions I took when coming into office was to garner support from across the Houses of the Oireachtas to set up a cross-party Committee to work on a 10 year strategy for our health service. I firmly believe that this is the last chance of this generation to get this right and to take the politics out of health. I was delighted to get that support and the cross-party Committee on the Future of Healthcare was established in recognition of the need for a fundamental re-shaping of our vision and long-term strategy for healthcare. It was mandated with agreeing broad political consensus on how this should be achieved, in the context of the scale of the challenges facing our health service, which is universally accepted."
In acknowledging the work of the Committee, the Minister said, “this report is the culmination of a year-long process of unprecedented cross-party collaboration, dialogue and engagement. I am delighted that the report has reached political consensus and support, and I commend the members of the Committee for the exceptional contribution of time and effort over the course of the last year.”
The Minister also praised the level of engagement with the Committee process saying, “I would also like to acknowledge the engagement of stakeholders, healthcare professionals, academics and other interested parties with the work of the Committee. The level of interest and constructive input into the Committee’s work demonstrates the appetite nationally for reforming and improving our health services.”
The report will be laid before the Houses of the Oireachtas today and published on the Oireachtas website. The Dáil will debate the report in mid-June. The Minister concluded by saying, “I look forward to considering the report in full in the coming days and discussing it at the next Cabinet meeting in advance of a full Dáil debate on the report in June.”
Note for Editors
The Committee on the Future of Healthcare was established on 1st June 2016. Details of the Committee’s terms of reference, membership and work programme are available here: http://www.oireachtas.ie/parliament/oireachtasbusiness/committees_list/future-of-healthcare/
The final report and previous interim reports of the Committee are published here: http://www.oireachtas.ie/parliament/oireachtasbusiness/committees_list/future-of-healthcare/reports/