Dental Care For Elderly


Sir, - I fail to understand why a State that professes to maintain a good public health service actively discriminates against those most in need of certain medical care.I refer to dental health. Those aged from 35 to 65 (60 for women) who are unemployed and entitled to a medical card for free health service cannot get dental care by way of remedial or preventive dentistry. Such people's entitlement is only to "pain relief" treatment - in other words, extractions only. Yet these are the people most likely to need remedial or preventive dentistry to safeguard their remaining teeth.Such regulations within a welfare health service are prejudicial and discriminatory. Does the Minister for Health believe it proper that a hospital amputates the leg of a medical card holder where other preventive surgery would not only prove successful but would be more fitting with the code of medical practice? I trust he would not condone such barbarism.Why then do existing regulations impose a similar condition upon certain people in need of dental care? - Yours, etc.,Keith Harris,Cecil Street,Limerick.