Health Act 1970

Number 1 of 1970

HEALTH ACT 1970

REVISED

Updated to 1 July 2024

This Revised Act is an administrative consolidation of the Health Act 1970. It is prepared by the Law Reform Commission in accordance with its function under the Law Reform Commission Act 1975 (3/1975) to keep the law under review and to undertake revision and consolidation of statute law.

All Acts up to and including the Employment Permits Act 2024 (17/2024), enacted 25 June 2024, and all statutory instruments up to and including the International Protection Act 2015 (Safe Countries of Origin) (Amendment) (No. 2) Order 2024 (S.I. No. 327 of 2024), made 1 July 2024, were considered in the preparation of this Revised Act.

Disclaimer: While every care has been taken in the preparation of this Revised Act, the Law Reform Commission can assume no responsibility for and give no guarantees, undertakings or warranties concerning the accuracy, completeness or up to date nature of the information provided and does not accept any liability whatsoever arising from any errors or omissions. Please notify any errors, omissions and comments by email to

revisedacts@lawreform.ie.


Number 1 of 1970


HEALTH ACT 1970

REVISED

Updated to 1 July 2024


ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

PART I

Preliminary and General

Section

1.

Short title, collective citation, construction and commencement.

2.

Interpretation.

3.

Repeals.

PART II

Administration

Chapter I

Health Boards

4.

Establishment of health boards. (Repealed)

5.

General provisions regarding health boards.

6.

Functions of health boards. (Repealed)

7.

Local committees. (Repealed)

8.

Committees of health boards. (Repealed)

9.

Expenses of members of boards and committees. (Repealed)

10.

Allowances to chairmen and vice-chairmen of health boards. (Repealed)

11.

Joint action by health boards. (Repealed)

12.

Removal of board from office. (Repealed)

Chapter II

Officers and Servants, etc.

13.

Chief executive officers of health boards. (Repealed)

14.

Other officers and servants of health boards. (Repealed)

15.

Application of Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Acts, 1926 and 1940. (Repealed)

16.

Delegation by chief executive officer. (Repealed)

17.

Performance of duties of officers. (Repealed)

18.

Qualifications for offices under health boards. (Repealed)

19.

Age limits. (Repealed)

20.

Superannuation. (Repealed)

21.

Suspension and removal of chief executive officer. (Repealed)

22.

Suspension of other officers of health boards. (Repealed)

23.

Removal of officers and servants.

24.

Committees for certain removals. (Repealed)

25.

Arrangements between health boards and local authorities. (Repealed)

26.

Arrangements by health boards for provision of services. (Repealed)

Chapter III

Finance

27.

Accounts of health boards. (Repealed)

28.

Audits of health board accounts. (Repealed)

29.

Abstract of health board accounts. (Repealed)

30.

Health board estimates. (Repealed)

31.

Limitations on expenditure by health board. (Repealed)

32.

Grants and local contributions to health boards. (Repealed)

33.

Borrowing and acceptance of gifts by health boards. (Repealed)

Chapter IV

Dissolution of Certain Bodies, etc.

34.

Dissolutions of certain health authorities and consequential provisions. (Repealed)

35.

Dissolutions of joint boards under section 45 of Health Act, 1953. (Repealed)

36.

Transfers of certain property. (Repealed)

37.

Transfer of certain officers and continuance of certain contracts of service. (Repealed)

PART III

Hospitals, etc.

38.

Provision and maintenance of hospitals, etc.

39.

Religious services.

40.

Acquisition of land for voluntary bodies.

41.

Bodies for co-ordination and development of hospital services. (Repealed)

42.

Dissolution of Hospitals Commission. (Repealed)

43.

Amendment of Public Hospitals Act, 1933.

44.

Administration of Central Mental Hospital.

PART IV

Health Services

Chapter I

Eligibility

45.

Full eligibility.

45A.

Full eligibility.

46.

Limited eligibility.

47.

Appeals.

47A.

Guidelines on "ordinarily resident in the State".

48.

Declaration regarding means.

48A.

Review of eligibility in certain circumstances.

49.

Change of circumstances.

50.

Charge where person not entitled obtains service.

Chapter II

Hospital In-Patient and Out-Patient Services

51.

In-patient services.

52.

Provision of in-patient services.

53.

Charges for in-patient services. (Repealed)

53A.

Charges for in-patient services in certain cases.

53B.

Charges for long-term residential care services.

53C.

Charges for acute in-patient services. (Repealed)

54.

In-patient services at choice of patient, etc.

55.

In-patient services for persons not entitled, or who have waived entitlement, to services under section 52.

56.

Out-patient services.

57.

Provision of ambulances, etc.

Chapter III

General Medical Services

58.

General practitioner medical and surgical service.

58A.

General practitioner medical and surgical service for certain persons over 70 years of age.

58B.

General practitioner medical and surgical service for persons under 6 years of age.

58C.

Agreement for provision of service under section 58B.

58D.

General practitioner medical and surgical service for persons in receipt of carer’s allowance or carer’s benefit.

59.

Drugs, medicines and appliances.

59A.

Prescription charges for persons who have attained age of 70 years and their dependants.

60.

Home nursing.

61.

Home help service.

61A.

Information to be provided to Health Service Executive by home care providers.

Chapter IV

Services for Mothers and Children

62.

Medical and midwifery care for mothers.

62A.

Services for women in accordance with Act of 2018.

63.

Medical care for infants.

64.

Maternity grants.

65.

Milk for mothers and children.

66.

Child health service.

Chapter V

Other Services

67.

Dental, ophthalmic and aural services.

67A.

Interpretation - sections 67A to 67D.

67B.

Residential support services.

67C.

Residential support services maintenance and accommodation contributions.

67D.

Waiver of residential support services maintenance and accommodation contributions.

67E.

Contraception services for certain women.

68.

Rehabilitation services.

69.

Maintenance allowances for disabled persons. (Repealed)

70.

Screening tests.

71.

Information and advice on health.

Chapter VI

Miscellaneous Provisions Regarding Services

72.

Regulations.

73.

Determination of doubt as to responsible Health Board. (Repealed)

74.

Recovery of charges and contributions.

74A.

Recovery of charges and contributions — further provision.

75.

False statements, etc.

PART IVA

Arrangements in relation to health services

75A.

Arrangements in relation to health services.

75B.

Regulations to give full effect to this Part.

75C.

Orders and regulations.

75D.

Orders and regulations. (Repealed)

PART V

Miscellaneous Provisions

76.

Amendment of hospital charters, etc.

77.

Removal of bodies.

78.

Control of possession of certain substances. (Repealed)

79.

Extension of Rats and Mice (Destruction) Act, 1919.

80.

Restriction of Health Services (Financial Provisions) Act, 1947. (Repealed)

81.

Amendment of section 3 of Mental Treatment Act, 1945.

82.

Adaptation of Mental Treatment Acts, 1945 to 1966.

83.

Local inquiries, etc. (Repealed)

84.

Public assistance.

85.

Regulations regarding adaptations.

86.

Amendment of City and County Management (Amendment) Act, 1955.

FIRST SCHEDULE

Enactments Repealed

SECOND SCHEDULE

Rules in relation to Membership and Meetings of Health Boards (Repealed)

THIRD SCHEDULE

Provisions consequential on Dissolutions

FOURTH SCHEDULE

Charges Payable in Respect of In-Patient Services Provided Under Section 55.

FIFTH SCHEDULE

Each of the Hospitals Specified Hereunder is Specified as a Hospital for the Purposes of this Schedule.

SIXTH SCHEDULE

Each of the Hospitals Specified Hereunder is Specified as a Hospital for the Purposes of this Schedule.

Acts Referred to

Health Act, 1947

1947, No. 28.

Children (Amendment) Act, 1957

1957, No. 28.

Rats and Mice (Destruction) Act, 1919

1919, c. 72.

Blind Persons Act, 1920

1920, c. 49.

State Lands (Workhouses) Act, 1930

1930, No. 9.

State Lands (Workhouses) Act, 1962

1962, No. 8.

Registration of Maternity Homes Act, 1934

1934, No. 14.

Midwives Act, 1944

1944, No. 10.

Nurses Act, 1950

1950, No. 27.

Poisons Act, 1961

1961, No. 12.

Health Services (Financial Provisions) Act, 1947

1947, No. 47.

Vital Statistics and Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act, 1952

1952, No. 8.

Local Government Act, 1955

1955, No. 9.

Local Government (Superannuation) Act, 1956

1956, No. 10.

Local Government Act, 1941

1941, No. 23.

Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926

1926, No. 39.

Medical Practitioners Act, 1927

1927, No. 25.

Public Hospitals Act, 1933

1933, No. 18.

Central Criminal Lunatic Asylum (Ireland) Act, 1845

1845, c. 107.

Social Welfare Act, 1952

1952, No. 11.

Illegitimate Children (Affiliation Orders) Act, 1930

1930, No. 17.

Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1871

1871, c. 109.

Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1898

1898, c. 37.

Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1902

1902, c. 38.

Health Act, 1953

1953, No. 26.

Dangerous Drugs Act, 1934

1934, No. 1.

Rats and Mice (Destruction) Act, 1919

1919, c. 72.

Mental Treatment Act, 1945

1945, No. 19.

Local Government Act, 1946

1946, No. 24.

Public Assistance Act, 1939

1939, No. 27.

City and County Management (Amendment) Act, 1955

1955, No. 12.


Number 1 of 1970


HEALTH ACT 1970

REVISED

Updated to 1 July 2024


AN ACT TO AMEND AND EXTEND THE HEALTH ACTS, 1947 TO 1966, AND CERTAIN OTHER ENACTMENTS, TO PROVIDE FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF BODIES FOR THE ADMINISTRATION OF THE HEALTH SERVICES, AND FOR OTHER MATTERS CONNECTED WITH THE MATTERS AFORESAID. [24th February, 1970.]

BE IT ENACTED BY THE OIREACHTAS AS FOLLOWS:

Annotations

Modifications (not altering text):

C1

References to “health board” construed as references to Health Service Executive (1.01.2005) by Health Act 2004 (42/2004), ss. 56(a), 66, S.I. No. 887 of 2004.

Definitions (Part 10).

56.—In this Part “specified body” means—

(a) the health boards,

...

References to specified bodies.

66.—Subject to this Act, references (however expressed) to a specified body in any Act passed before the establishment day, or in any instrument made before that day under an Act, are to be read as references to the Executive, unless the context otherwise requires.

C2

Functions transferred (1.01.2005, establishment day) by Health Act 2004 (42/2004), s. 59, S.I. No. 885 of 2004, subject to transitional provisions in s. 74 and sch. 5.

Transfer of functions of specified bodies to Executive.

59.—(1) The functions that, immediately before the establishment day, were the functions of a specified body under or in connection with the enactments referred to in Schedule 3 are, by this Act, transferred to the Executive on that day.

(2) If a provision of an enactment referred to in Schedule 3, or a provision of an instrument made under such enactment, does not come into effect until on or after the establishment day, a function that on the passing of that enactment or the making of that instrument was assigned under or in connection with that provision to a specified body is, by this Act, transferred to the Executive on the commencement of that provision.

(3) The functions transferred by this Act to the Executive include the functions specified in any enactment referred to in Schedule 3 as a function of the following:

(a) the chief executive officer of a health board;

(b) the Regional Chief Executive of the Eastern Regional Health Authority;

(c) the area chief executive of an Area Health Board.

(4) This section does not apply in relation to the functions of the Hospital Bodies Administrative Bureau.

...

SCHEDULE

Transfer of Functions and References to Functional Areas

Section 59 and 67.

1. Health Acts 1947 to 2001

...

Editorial Notes:

E1

Previous affecting provision: health board established under Act deemed to be and have been a fit person for purposes of the Children Act 1908 (8 Edw. 7 ch. 67), s. 38 (9.11.1989) by Children Act 1989 (18/1989), s. 1, commenced on enactment; Children Act 1908 (8 Edw. 7 ch. 67) repealed (1.05.2002) by Children Act 2001 (24/2001), s. 5 and sch. 2, S.I. No. 151 of 2002.