Entitlement to health services is primarily based on residency and means. Any person, regardless of nationality, who is accepted by the Health Service Executive (HSE) as being ordinarily resident in Ireland is entitled to either full eligibility (Category 1) or limited eligibility (Category 2) for health services.
Category 1: Medical Card holders – If you have a medical card, you are entitled to:
• free GP services
• prescribed drugs and medicines, subject to a charge per item prescribed
• public hospital services
• dental, optical and aural services
• maternity and infant care services
• a range of community care and personal social services.
Note! There is free G.P care in Ireland for children under 6 and people over 70 years of age, regardless of whether or not they are Medical Card holders
Additional Information on means testing requirements and the application process for a Medical Card can be found HERE
Category 2: Non-Medical Card holders
If you do not have a medical card, you are entitled to:
Free public hospital services but you may have to pay in-patient and out-patient hospital charges.
You are also entitled to subsidised prescribed drugs and medicines and maternity and infant care services and you may be entitled to free or subsidised community care and personal social services.
Unless you hold a GP Visit Card, you are not entitled to free GP services. (Exemptions in relation to children under 6yrs and people over 70 years of age)
You may be entitled to some community care and personal social services.
Full information on entitlement to Heath Care in Ireland can be found HERE