Deputy Michael Lowry has today confirmed the reinstatement of a Rural Practice Allowance Support Package for a General Practitioner (GP) vacancy, which is currently available in Bansha, Co. Tipperary.
The community of the small village of Bansha and those residing in the surrounding hinterland recently converged on their local GAA hall in large numbers, on November 27th last, to register their protest and to express serious concerns over replacement services, due to the imminent departure of their current local GP.
The reason for lack of interest by GP’s in applying for a previously advertised replacement post was the removal of a ‘Rural Practice Allowance’ by the former TD and Health Minister, Mr James O’Reilly. This Rural Practice Allowance was, prior to the ascendency of the present government, always paid to offset the high costs incurred by GP’s in attempting to run a rural surgery situated outside of larger more populated urban areas.
As Deputy Lowry had predicted, over the past week the Health Service Executive (HSE) have now agreed to the restoration of this Rural Practice Financial Incentive, in respect of this GP vacancy.
“The welcome restoration of this Rural Practice Allowance will now allow for this post to be re-advertised and I am confident it will attract a suitable number of new applications,” stated Deputy Lowry.
“The local Action Committee, lead by Mr Andrew O’Halloran and the Bansha community are to be fully complimented on taking the initiative in highlighting this issue. Through their resilience and determination they have succeeded in receiving a most positive outcome regarding this Rural Practice Allowance problem,” continued Deputy Lowry.
The local Bansha Action Committee are now expected to meet on Monday evening next, December 21st, with officials from the HSE, to further discuss the implementation of this now welcomed decision affecting this rural locality.