Quirke Dental Surgeons has been part of the medical card scheme for many years, but unfortunately, our dentists have made the decision to resign from the medical card scheme as it is no longer viable for us to continue to offer services in the way we would like them to be offered. Our Practice will therefore no longer be accepting patients for treatment on the Medical Card scheme.
There have been increasing problems with this scheme since 2008 when FEMPI introduced cuts to the fees. The HSE has not reversed these cuts in the intervening years while we have been expected to continue to cover the increasing costs involved in delivering a modern service. In addition, the scheme is restricted to a very limited range of treatments which we believe is not consistent with best practice in dentistry.
During lockdown, we continued to provide emergency cover for Medical Card patients who had previously attended us. At the same time, the HSE shut down all of its dental services and provided no assistance whatsoever to dentists in sourcing the necessary PPE even though this was explicitly promised by the Minister for Health. The HSE also did not make provision for prescriptions to be generated remotely when appropriate. Referral services were ceased.
Since we reopened to routine treatments after lockdown there is an ongoing need for additional PPE to meet the standards required by the Irish Dental Council and global demand during the pandemic has also increased the cost for PPE significantly. We have also invested in additional air sterilisation and handling equipment to maximise the safety of our patients and staff. No assistance has been provided by the HSE for any of these measures.
It has become untenable for us to continue to support the HSE and the Medical Card scheme it has failed to modernise, so we have decided that we must cease to make it available.
We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause you.
What does this mean for medical card patients?
While we will no longer be accepting patients for Medical Card treatment, we will continue to provide services under the PRSI scheme or on a private basis. Please call us on 051 421453 to seek information on how to establish if you are eligible for treatment on the PRSI scheme. Fees for some of the more popular private treatments are available on the fees page on this website.