GP visit cards for people aged 70 and over

From Wednesday, 5 August 2015, everyone aged 70 years or over, ordinarily resident in Ireland, will be eligible for free GP care regardless of income.

All people aged 70 or over who do not have a medical card or GP visit card can register from today (Friday, 31 July 2015) to access this service.

You can register online for the GP Visit Card.

Alternatively, you can download the application form (PDF) or request an application form by calling 1890 252 919. Registration forms will also be available from Community Health Offices.

Find out more on the HSE website, gpvisitcard.ie.

Bank holiday arrangement for social welfare payments

The Department of Social Protection has published information about arrangements over the bank holiday weekend.

DSP offices are closed on Monday, 3 August 2015.

If you are due to sign for a jobseeker’s payment at your Intreo office or local social welfare office on Monday 3 August 2015 you do not have to sign on that day. However normal signing arrangements apply for the rest of the week.

You can collect payments due to be paid at the post office from Saturday 1 August. Note that all post offices will be closed on Monday.

EFT payments to an account in a financial institution that are due on Monday 3 August will be paid on Friday 31 July.

It’s World Hepatitis Day

It’s World Hepatitis Day. In 2015 the World Health Organisation (WHO) is highlighting the urgent need for countries to prevent viral hepatitis infection and to ensure that people who have been infected are diagnosed and offered treatment. This year, the Organisation is focusing particularly on hepatitis B and C, which together cause approximately 80% of all liver cancer deaths and kill close to 1.4 million people every year.

Visit who.org to find out more. 

In Ireland the HSE urges anyone who may be at risk of hepatitis C to seek help and get tested. It is estimated that between 20,000 and 30,000 people in Ireland are chronically infected with hepatitis C, more than half of whom are not aware of the infection. Approximately 700-800 new cases are notified each year.

Visit hepinfo.ie to find out more about Hepatitis C.

Find out about the National Broadband Plan

Under the National Broadband Plan the Government aims to ensure that all citizens have access to high speed broadband no matter where they live or work.

As part of the plan the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources is carrying out a public consultation.

The public consultation document (pdf) sets out the key elements of State intervention – what services are proposed and how they will be delivered. The purpose of this public consultation is to seek the views of industry, stakeholders and members of the public, on the measures proposed in the intervention strategy. This consultation will close at 5.00pm on 14 September 2015.

You can use the online template to make your submission (you then need to email or post your submission).

How to register your contact details if you are travelling abroad

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade encourages citizens travelling or living overseas to register their contact details.

This allows the Department to contact you in the event of an unforeseen crisis, for example, if there is a natural disaster, or if you have a family emergency while you are overseas.

Find out more and register your details on the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website.