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Terminally ill man claims his medical card has been cancelled after means test

A County Clare man who is fighting terminal cancer has said his medical card was taken off him after he was subjected to a rigorous means test.

John Wall's medical card has been cancelled on two occasions since he was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer two years ago.

In the past, anyone diagnosed with a terminal illness was granted a medical card after 24 hours and this was reviewed after six months.

The review was extended to 18 months following a campaign by patient groups, but the 48-year-old said there is no accountability or transparency:

Mr Wall said: "But the HSE confirmed yesterday to one of the national papers that the medical emergency card is now means-tested and it's only valid for six months.

"You can seek a review on medical grounds, that is despite a commitment in 2014 by the then minister for health Leo Varadkar, that no terminally ill person whatsoever had to undergo a review to maintain their card."

He said he has more questions than answers since he spoke with the HSE last Monday.

He said: "When I speak in terms of what has happened with the HSE since Monday, I've had no correspondence whatsoever even though there is an open line of communication to me from the HSE.

"What I am learning, I'm learning through the media, which I think is completely unacceptable because I initiated this discussion, I have been part of it and will continue to be part of it for as long as there is some form of resolution."