Varadkar rejects FF criticism on Health budget

Health Minister Leo Varadkar has defended the budget his department has been given to run the service next year.

Minister Varadkar has been given an extra €280m for 2016, but a bailout of some €600m is required for this year.

He has insisted that some of that overspend is a one-off and will not be repeated next year.

Minister Varadkar rejected criticism from Fianna Fáil that the budget for health is unrealistic.

"I'd point you to your own pre-Budget submission, which provides an extra €380m for health," he said.

"Maybe knock another €100m off that for Lansdowne Road [Agreement].

"Are you telling me that you provided, in your pre-Budget submission, inadequately for health?

"Because the amount you're providing is pretty much the same as us.

"Why would you provide an inadequate amount for health? You're accusing the Government of doing pretty much exactly what you put in your own pre-Budget submission."

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