Anna May Harkin, The Institute of Public Health in Ireland
08 Jun 2001
This document was prepared for the National Anti-Poverty Strategy and Health Working Group to inform its work. It provides a picture of the current issues in relation to health service access in Ireland.
This paper, prepared as background material for the Sub-group on Equity of Access to Health Services of the Working Group on the National Anti-Poverty Strategy (NAPS)and Health, seeks to provide an overview of some of the issues relevant to equity of access to health and personal social services in an Irish context. The paper first addresses the question of the contribution of health services to health status. Drawing on the work of Davey Smith, it proposes that, while many factors other than health services affect health, improvements in recent years in treatment following the onset of disease, mean that equity in access to services has increasing potential to reduce health inequalities.