Sláíntecare Action Plan for 2022 Published
The Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has published the Sláíntecare Action Plan 2022.
Sláintecare works to deliver a safe, health and social care service that meets the needs of our growing population, and attracts and retains the very best healthcare clinicians, managers, and staff. It is about access, affordability and quality -the Right Care, at the Right Place, delivered at the Right Time by the Right Team.
The 2022 Sláintecare Action Plan sets out the ongoing priorities to improve our health and social care services.
The main areas of focus this year include:
- Addressing waiting lists.
- Further developments in shifting care to the community.
- Further investment in innovation, enhanced capacity and access to care.
- Implementing digital and eHealth solutions in line with Government’s recently published national digital framework “Harnessing Digital”.
- Introducing the Sláintecare Consultant Contract.
- Progressing the National Elective Ambulatory Strategy through the provision of new elective capacity in Cork, Dublin and Galway.
- The realignment of acute and community services via Regional Health Areas.
Minister Donnelly said, “I am delighted to publish the 2022 Sláintecare Action Plan. So far this year we have made considerable progress in the areas of waiting lists, the National Elective Ambulatory Strategy and Regional Health Areas (RHAs). A progress report on the implementation of Sláintecare during the first 6 months of 2022 will be published in the summer.”
“In February, the 2022 Waiting List Action Plan was launched to improve access to care. 75,000 patients were on active hospital (inpatient and day case) waiting lists at the end of last year. The Plan aims to have treated almost all of those patients by the end of 2022, bringing the number of patients on active waiting lists to its lowest point in 5 years.”
The Minister added, “Government has approved Sláintecare’s National Elective Ambulatory Care Strategy, which will see 3 new Elective Hospitals developed in Cork, Galway, and Dublin, changing the way scheduled procedures, surgeries, scans and outpatient services are arranged to ensure greater access and capacity and address waiting lists.”
“In April, Cabinet granted approval to draft the General Scheme of a Bill to provide for the abolition of both overnight and day case public in-patient charges for children under 16. The proposed Bill will remove the existing acute statutory in-patient charge of €80 per night for all children less than 16 years of age in all public hospitals. This is another important step towards delivering affordable universal healthcare in Ireland.”
Minister Donnelly concluded, “the government has approved the next steps for Regional Health Areas Implementation. RHAs will provide for the alignment and integration of hospital and community healthcare services at a regional level, based on defined populations and their local needs. This is key to delivering on the Sláintecare vision of an integrated health and social care service, improving the quality of our community health services.”
One of the key principles of Sláintecare is to promote health and wellbeing and prevent illness. This principle embodies all that Healthy Ireland seeks to achieve. Healthy Ireland has been a core framework for the implementation of Sláintecare. Prevention of illness, in addition to supporting people to live healthier lives, as outlined in the Sláintecare Action Plan, is also a vital element in reducing the demand for hospital services and improving quality of life.
In addition to the priorities set out in the Sláintecare Implementation Strategy and Action Plan 2021 – 2023, the Action Plan is also aligned with the priorities set out in the Programme for Government, the Department of Health Statement of Strategy and the HSE National Service Plan 2022.