New plans being discussed by the Government may see the end of the controversial means testing for families of seriously ill children applying for medical cards.
Minister for Health Leo Varadkar is said to be currently looking into the issue, after it was highlighted to him by the independent group of patients and doctors established to resolve card access problems.
Proposed measures include that the granting of a medical card could be linked to the Domiciliary Care Allowance (DCA), a State support option that does not require means testing.
Unlike the cureent medical card system, the DCA is entirely based on a child’s disability, rather than the family’s actual income.
Currently, about 26,000 seriously ill children under the age of 16 are in receipt of DCA. 9,000 of those children do not currently hold a medical card.