Govt Slashes Over 450 Medical Cards for Over 70s in Kerry– Daly

Over 1,300 medical cards in Kerry Cut in One Year

Figures released to Fianna Fáil have revealed the full extent of cuts to medical cards in Kerry with over 1,300 cards cut in 12 months, over 450 of these for over 70s.

The number of medical cards in Kerry has been cut by 1,354 from 61,303 in September 2013 to 59,949 last September, this includes a reduction in the number of over 70s medical cards by 470 (from 13,219 to 12,749).

Fianna Fáil Senator Mark Daly has condemned the cuts.

He commented: “These are appalling cuts and have had a major impact on people’s lives in all parts of Kerry. I have consistently pointed out that the Government was engaged in a deliberate and disgraceful attack on people with medical cards, which it denied for 18 months before being shamed into admitting this was a deliberate policy. We now have clear evidence of the scale of the cuts. In one year alone over 1,300 medical cards were taken off people in Kerry alone – all at the hands of Minister James Reilly. Over 470 of these were medical cards for people over 70 years of age.

“For two years the Government ignored the issue and denied that there was a deliberate policy to cut medical cards for people serious illnesses and disabilities and the over 70s. It took the loss of hundreds of council seats to make the government sit up and listen.

“However despite claiming to stop these cuts and to begin restoring medical cards the Government is still taking cards away from people desperately in need of them. I am dealing with cases every week of people having their cards withdrawn and then being denied their cards again on appeal. It is astonishing that thousands of families are still enduring so much anguish, hurt and expense at the hands of this Government.”

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