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26 May 2022

HSE 'failing Offaly children' with broken dental scheme

HSE 'failing Offaly children' with broken dental scheme

HSE 'failing Offaly children' with broken dental scheme

Sinn Féin TD for Laois-Offaly Brian Stanley has said the HSE is "failing children by not providing them with their statutory entitlement of routine dental screening in schools.’’

“The crisis continues to deteriorate, and figures received by Sinn Féin gives a county by county breakdown. The total amount of sixth class pupils in Laois/Offaly awaiting routine check-ups is 2,872. In Laois, there are 1560 children with 1,312 in Offaly," Deputy Stanley explained.

"This compares with an all-time high of 2,507 last March. This has been an increase of 365 children," he added.

He said children are not getting their first assessment until they attend secondary school.

"I am aware that some are waiting up to the age of 14 years and older and are in second year in Post Primary School. Nationally there are 100,000 children waiting on appointments.

"The Minister and the HSE need to accept that this scheme is broken. The absence of treatment for children will lead to far more serious dental and general health issues in later life.’

“The situation for adults with medical cards trying to get treatment under the DTSS is no better." He said this scheme has totally collapsed in his native Laois.

"This means there is no service available for those medical card patients to get treatment. Private dentists across the country have left the scheme in droves.

"We are informed that the Government and the Irish Dental Association are currently in negotiations, but agreement appears to be elusive.

"The Government and the HSE now need to face the reality that a number of directly employed dentists need to be recruited by the HSE. Good dentists will only be attracted with the offer of permanent posts.

“I’m calling on the Minister and the CEO of the HSE to recognise the reality that our dental services have regressed and that 40 years ago there very much better."

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