Introduction to the HAA Card


If you contracted Hepatitis C from the administration within the State of contaminated blood or blood products, you are entitled to a range of services including GP services, all prescribed drugs, medicines and appliances, dental and ophthalmic services, home support, home nursing, counselling services and other services without charge. These services are provided under the Health (Amendment) Act 1996. If you are eligible, the Hepatitis C Liaison Officer in your Health Service Executive (HSE) Area will arrange to issue you with a Health (Amendment) Act Card (HAA Card), which will make it easier for you to access these services.

As well as the type of services already mentioned, there are some hospitals that are specially funded by the Health Service Executive to look after your healthcare and the services covered in the hospital setting are outlined in this website also.

What is the HAA Card?

The HAA Card is given to men, women and children who contracted Hepatitis C from the administration within the State of contaminated blood or blood products. It is not the same as a medical card, a GP visit card or a Drug Payment Scheme card. The HAA Card gives entitlements to additional services, on more flexible terms and conditions than the medical card. The HAA card and the entitlements attached to it are for the lifetime of the cardholder. In addition, the HSE have discretion to take particular circumstances into account. The HAA Card is personal to the individual cardholder and does not cover family members (except in the case of access to counselling services, please refer to section on counselling). For this reason, it is important for existing medical cardholders with dependants to retain their medical card. It is also advisable for the same reason for existing GP visit and DPS cardholders to retain those also. Cardholders with private health insurance can also choose to retain this insurance for the same reason. If you already have private health insurance you might like to take into consideration that hospital and consultant services for eligible persons with Hepatitis C are available in public hospital facilities only.

You should bring your HAA card with you when you are availing of services, as you might need to show it for identification purposes. It will also assist your healthcare professional in claiming payment from the HSE for any services provided.

If your healthcare professional has any difficulties or needs anything explained, they should contact the Hepatitis C Liaison Officer, who will be happy to assist. You should not have to resolve any difficulties yourself or explain your entitlements to any healthcare professional and the HSE will make every effort to ensure that all HAA cardholders are afforded this courtesy. When you avail of the GP, dental, ophthalmic or pharmacy services to which you are entitled, the service provider generally sends the bill to the Primary Care Reimbursement Service (PCRS) of the HSE. The PCRS operates on behalf of the HSE and its purpose is solely to act as a payments mechanism. The PCRS also pays service providers for a number of other health services schemes; because it has the computer systems and staff in place to process large numbers of payments to thousands of service providers every month, it is usually the preferred mechanism for payment in respect of routine services.

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