News & Media

Medical Card Campaign by John Wall finally delivered

9 February 2021

Statement by Alan Kelly TD
Party Leader and Spokesperson on Health and Disability Services

The decision to extend medical cards for those with a terminal illness while overdue is very welcome said Labour Leader Alan Kelly, praising campaigner John Wall for his successful but long campaign.

Deputy Kelly said:

“I am delighted today that the vocal campaign by John Wall to secure medical cards for those with a terminal illness has finally been successful. This is a campaign I have worked with John on for some time, so I am personally relieved that his advocacy and work have paid off. I have been constantly amazed at the tenacity, bravery and commitment shown by John over the last two years and the dedication he brought to this campaign. What he has achieved will bring much comfort to thousands of people who when given the worst news will know that there is that extra support available.

“The Minister for Health has today finally secured Cabinet approval for medical card eligibility to be extended to those who are terminally ill and given a prognosis of up to 24 months.

“As John Wall himself said last year ‘I would love nothing more than to dedicate whatever time I have remaining solely to my family, creating memories that will last & not having to pursue a campaign which seeks to do nothing other than ensure you implement a change which you support.’ so I am glad he has been successful.

“The power to do this was always vested with the Minister through the 1970 Health Act, and it was a programme for government commitment. While today’s announcement is administrative until further legislation is put in place, I would urge the Minister to also ensure that a close eye is kept on how this new benefit is implemented to ensure those that need it, receive it without delay.

“John Wall is a friend of mine, he is terminally ill and has spent two years of his life campaigning for this, and I am glad that the dithering has ended and this new support is finally in place.”