"Without Primary Medical Certificates, the independence of those who avail of scheme curtailed" - Cllr Rena Donaghey.
Ongoing delays in processing Primary Medical Certificates are causing “undue strain” on applicants.
According to Buncrana councillor Rena Donaghey, Primary Medical Certificates need to be progressed more quickly.
Cllr Donaghey said: “There are still ongoing delays in the processing of Primary Medical Certificates and these are causing a lot of undue strain on applicants.
“The Disabled Drivers and Passenger Scheme is operated by the Department of Finance. HSE community medical doctors carry out an independent medical assessment of applicants for this scheme. With the current pandemic, independent, private travel is more important than ever, particularly for everyone who avails of this scheme.
“The aspects of the scheme that relate to VAT and VRT must be administered by Revenue, as they have the relevant taxpayer data and expertise required to administer a scheme refunding those taxes.
“The Department of Finance is responsible for the legislation governing the scheme, however, and, without the Primary Medical Certificates, the independence of those who avail of the scheme has been curtailed.”
Following a Supreme Court decision in June 2020, the assessment process for Primary Medical Certificates was suspended.
The HSE was subsequently instructed to recommence assessments from January 1, 2021.
According to Cllr Donaghey, the backlog is “inexcusable”.
“I have written to the Minister and I hope that this issue will be sorted and expedited. I will be keeping a close eye on progress,” concluded Cllr Donaghey.
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