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Ireland’s special health agency is stepping up to deal with the epidemic

Dublin: As part of Ireland’s health-care reform, the government is establishing a new agency to combat growing health threats. The new agency will deal with infectious diseases and biological threats in the environment.

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly will formally ask the Cabinet to approve the proposal at a special cabinet meeting at Avondale House in County Wicklow this morning.

The new agency will be in charge of ensuring that the country is prepared in the event of a pandemic. Responsibility for most of the work undertaken by the designated agency lies between the Department’s Chief Medical Officer, the Health Protection Surveillance Centre, and the Regional Public Health Doctors.

Ireland is also following in the footsteps of the World Health Organisation and other EU countries that established such organisations in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other suggestions:

Prime Minister Leo Varadkar has asked ministers to prioritise a number of decisions to be tabled ahead of the budget, with a number of new proposals expected at today’s cabinet meeting.

A reforestation programme worth €1.3 billion is also set to begin today.

Another plan is currently being proposed to provide subsidies to companies doing commercial activities using kerosene. Businesses that have purchased a minimum of 1,000 litres of kerosene can apply for the scheme. They will be compensated for half of the increased kerosene cost.

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