Eight key areas have been highlighted in the draft of outcomes from 4 regional consultative meetings held for development of the National Traveller Health Action Plan (NTHAP).

The HSE reported that meetings were well attended and the quality of discussion was both lively and well informed.   They thank all who participated.

Eight key high-level priority areas were reiterated by stakeholders across all consultations:

  1. Establishment of PATH – Planning Advisory Body for Traveller Health –  to drive implementation and delivery of National Traveller Health Action Plan

  2. Development of a SMART NTHAP (underpinned by community development), inclusive of timelines, ring-fenced resources and a strong monitoring and evaluation framework (SMART = Specific Measurable Attainable Realistic Timely)

  3. Ensure NTHAP compliments existing Traveller health infrastructure/THUs

  4. Ensure an evidence base for Traveller health through the implementation and rollout of ethnic equality monitoring in HSE

  5. Terms and conditions for Traveller PHCTP workers (including the HSE’s legal obligation to pay the minimum statutory wage and the establishment of clear links and progression routes progression Traveller PHCTP workers in HSE)

  6. Implementation of Public Sector Duty (Section 42, IHREC Act 2015)

  7. HSE to work with DSP to prioritise an exemption for Traveller Primary Health Care Workers in relation to the income threshold for Medical Card or GP Visit Cards given health inequalities

  8. Actions in NTHAP must be integrated into national service and operational plans particularly in the areas of mental health/ suicide, counselling and alcohol/drug addiction.

In terms of substantive areas of health: mental health and accommodation (and the connection between the two), in addition to compulsory pre-service and CPD cultural awareness and anti-racism training for all HSE staff emerged as key areas requiring urgent attention in the NTHAP.  Full report here.

Submissions still wanted

There is still an opportunity to make written submissions before the end of July 2018. Please forward these to pwatt@cfireland.ie with a copy to michelle.hayes2@hse.ie

The National Social Inclusion Office of the HSE say they will publish the final plan during the autumn.