In Ireland the Department of Health is responsible for health policy. The Health Service Executive (HSE) is responsible for health and personal services and this is achieved through a network of Local Health Offices, health centres and clinics.
Local Health Office
Your Local Health Office is your entry point to community health and personal social services. The wide range of services that are provided through Local Health Offices and from Health Centres include general practitioner services, public health nursing, child health services, community welfare, chiropody, ophthalmic, speech therapy, social work, addiction counselling and treatment, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, psychiatric services and home help.
To find your Local Health Office, please use the interactive map on the HSE website.
The population is divided into two groups for the purposes of entitlement to health services:
- Medical card holders – Medical Cards allow people to access Family Doctor or GP services, community health services, dental services, prescription medicine costs, hospital care and a range of other benefits free of charge.
- Non-medical card holders – People without medical cards can still access a wide range of community and hospital health services, either free of charge or at reduced cost
A wide range of emergency, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation services are provided in Ireland’s 51 public hospitals. Specialist services include heart, lung and liver transplants, bone marrow transplants, spinal injuries, paediatric cardiac services and medical genetics. The HSE website provides contact details for public hospitals, both those managed directly by the HSE and those run by voluntary organisations.
Please visit Public Hospitals in Ireland on the HSE website.
Cross border issues
Frontier workers – If you live in one jurisdiction and work in another you may be eligible for health care both where you live and where you work.
For further information please see Border People – Healthcare for frontier workers