GPs and abortion service
Sir, – The HSE, at the behest of the Department of Health, has offered GPs like myself a fee of €450 to provide a termination of pregnancy service to an eligible patient.
This fee is over twice that payable to GPs for providing seven antenatal visits to a pregnant woman (€215), and almost twice the amount payable for an emergency delivery (€230). Furthermore, the GP care of a newborn child up to the age of six years costs the State a mere €125 per annum.
One wonders if the Department of Health has suddenly become generous after years of cuts, or is simply buying GPs to provide the service.
Either way, it appears that our Government values the destruction of life far more than its protection and care. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – As a GP when I carry out a six-week baby check I receive a gross payment from the HSE of €19.21 for the consultation. For the six-week check of the child’s mother I receive a payment of €19.21. These consultations can often be lengthy and involve multiple physical and psychological concerns which need to be addressed.
If I decide to provide abortion/termination services it appears I would receive €150 per consultation.
This demonstrates the Government policy of starving real general practice of funding and also shows where its true priorities lie. – Yours, etc,
Dr PAUL BYRNE,