The introduction of free GP visits for all children aged 5 or less has finally happened.
It has been ongoing since 2012/2013 and it was mentioned in Budget 2014
Finally – as from Monday June 15th all children aged 5 or less will be able to register for free GP visits . The free scheme will begin in July.
Not all GPs in the country are participating in the scheme – but the HSE say that you can move to a GP that is accepting free visits from under 6’s. In rural areas this might be difficult.
As of June 14th around 60% of all GPs had agreed to join the scheme.
The HSE have a list of GPs that have agreed to take part in the scheme here
If your child (or children) has a current Medical Card or GP Visit Card they will automatically be registered for this new scheme. All other children will need to be registered for this new Free GP Visit scheme before thay can avail of the free services
Online Registration – you can register your child on the HSE site here.
(Note -15/6/15 these links were working fine on Sunday night but the extra traffic to the HSE site could result in problems accessing the forms.)
The HSE said that after you have completed the registration process, details will be sent to your GP of choice who must accept your child or children to his or her patient panel. Once the GP of choice has confirmed acceptance – a GP Visit Card will be issued to all eligible children within a few days.
The GP Visit Card for children under 6 does not cover the cost of medications prescribed by a GP or hospital charges.
The contact number for the medical cards department is one of thse “lo call” ones – 1890 252 919
But you could also try this “normal” landline number which might work out cheaper if your phone contract includes free calls to landlines. – 01 8647180.
More details of potential high costs of 1890 numbers here.