Limerick GP warns that under-6 scheme will lead to “yellow pack”…

first_img Previous articleQuinlivan warns of ‘dishonest’ EU/ US dealNext article#VIDEO Latvian charged with Limerick murder John Keoghhttp://www.limerickpost.ie WhatsApp Limerick GP Dr Emmet KerinLIMERICK doctor and vice president of the National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP) Dr Emmet Kerin has warned that the Government’s scheme to provide free GP care for children under six will lead to “a yellow pack” service.And according to Dr Kerin, the majority of doctors in the region are opposed to the scheme and do not intend to sign up for it.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up He told the Limerick Post: “The general feeling is no. I have to acknowledge that there are practices that financially are really struggling, and this offer is nearly tempting to them in the short term. But from talking to other colleagues here, they are generally saying no.“The offer as it stands isn’t good for GPs, it’s not good for the future of the GP service and it’s not a good deal for patients.”Dr Kerin has criticised the Government for launching the scheme “to gain votes”He commented: “With all the gloss and the spin on it, it sounds like a great deal, but the substance isn’t there.  As a parent, you would think that it is a good scheme but actually it isn’t providing anything. It’s very hard to take on the Government, it’s an emotive issue for parents, of course they want their children to be looked after, but it’s not a free service.“I would have to reduce my consultation time from 15 minutes to seven minutes. We will end up with a yellow pack service. Patients will have shorter consultation times and they won’t get to see the same GP each time they come in. If a GP doesn’t know you, you’re more likely to be referred to A&E.”Dr Kerin explained that the scheme does not include additional tests or x-rays that may be necessary, and does not cover the cost of medication for chronic conditions.He added that the Government should prioritise providing care for patients with chronic conditions.“There are more than 9,000 children receiving a domiciliary allowance, they have chronic conditions like cancer or Down Syndrome, and they’re not entitled to a medical card,” he pointed out.He also warned that it would generate “an additional four million consultations” per year for GPs nationally, and that many practices do not have the manpower to deal with an increase in demand.The NAGP is urging doctors not to join the scheme, however individual GPs are free to decide whether or not to sign up.It has since emerged that the scheme will cost double the amount initially envisaged with Junior Health Minister Kathleen Lynch telling the Dáil last Thursday that the extra €30 million now required would not come from other health areas.Stating that the cost of the project was now expected to be €67 million, not €37 million, she said: “we may need a supplementary budget towards the end of the year”, but any extra funds would not impact on other services. Limerick’s National Camogie League double header to be streamed live Twitter Predictions on the future of learning discussed at Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival Linkedin TAGSDr Emmet KerinhealthlimerickNational Association of General Practitioners (NAGP)Under-6 GP scheme Email Printcenter_img Vanishing Ireland podcast documenting interviews with people over 70’s, looking for volunteers to share their stories RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Limerick Artist ‘Willzee’ releases new Music Video – “A Dream of Peace” Advertisement Limerick Ladies National Football League opener to be streamed live Facebook NewsLimerick GP warns that under-6 scheme will lead to “yellow pack” medical serviceBy John Keogh – April 24, 2015 762 WATCH: “Everyone is fighting so hard to get on” – Pat Ryan on competitive camogie squads last_img read more