The Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) has welcomed the announcement of new measures to improve the affordability of healthcare in Ireland. Responding to the announcement, Secretary General of the Irish Pharmacy Union Mr Darragh O’Loughlin said: “It is extremely welcome that the 50 cent reduction in prescription charges that was promised in last year’s budget is now happening. This is a recognition that the charge is a blunt and unfair tax that targets some of the most vulnerable in our society.

“The €10 reduction in the monthly threshold for the Drugs Payment Scheme (DPS) from €124 to €114 is also welcome. The IPU has consistently called for this be reduced, and we hope that the trend of reducing it will continue to ensure that prescription medicines remain affordable for everyone and that financial cost doesn’t prevent people from getting the medicines they need.”

Mr O’Loughlin concluded: “While [this] announcement is welcome, we continue to call for the full abolition of prescription charges, particularly for people who are hit hardest, such as people who are homeless, those with long-term medical conditions and people who are receiving end-of-life care.”