The Health (Amendment) (No. 2) Bill 2004

JurisdictionIreland
CourtSupreme Court
JudgeMurray C.J.
Judgment Date16 February 2005
Neutral Citation[2005] IESC 7
Date16 February 2005
Docket Number[S.C. No. 524

[2005] IESC 7

THE SUPREME COURT

Murray C.J.

Denham J.

McGuinness J.

Hardiman J.

Geoghegan J.

Fennelly J.

McCracken J.

524/04
ART 26 OF THE CONSTITUTION & HEALTH (AMDT)(NO 2) BILL 2004, IN RE
IN THE MATTER OF ARTICLE 26 OF THE CONSTITUTION

AND

THE HEALTH (AMENDMENT) (NO. 2) BILL, 2004

CONSTITUTION ART 26HEALTH (AMDT) (NO 2) BILL 2004

CONSTITUTION ART 26.2.1HEALTH ACT 1970 S53

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(2)HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(3)

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(4)HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(5)

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(6)HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(7)

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(8)HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(9)

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(10)

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(11)

HEALTH (AMDT) (NO 2) BILL 2004 S1(a)

HEALTH (AMDT) (NO 2) BILL 2004 S1(b)

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(1)

CRIMINAL LAW (JURISDICTION) BILL 1975,

RE 1977 IR 129HEALTH ACT 1970 S51

HEALTH ACT 1947 S2

CONSTITUTION ART 40.3.1

CONSTITUTION ART 40.3.2

HEALTH ACT 1970 S52

RYAN v AG 1965 IR 294

MCGEE v AG 1974 IR 284

O'BRIEN v WICKLOW UDC UNREP COSTELLO 10.6.1994 2000/13/4988

N (F) v MIN FOR EDUCATION 1995 1 IR 409

WARD OF COURT, RE 1996 2 IR 79

D (T) v MIN EDUCATION 2001 4 IR 259

AG v HAMILTON 1993 2 IR 250 1993 ILRM 81

SINNOTT v MIN EDUCATION 2001 2 IR 545

CONSTITUTION ART 42

CONSTITUTION ART 15.2.1

CITYVIEW PRESS LTD v COMHAIRLE OILIUNA 1980 IR 381

LEONTJAVA & CHANG v DPP & ORS 2004 1 IR 615

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(9)(d)

HEALTH ACT 1970 PART IV

HEALTH ACT 1970 S45(1)

HEALTH ACT 1970 S46

HEALTH ACT 1970 S45(3)

MCINERNEY (WARD OF COURT),

RE 1976-77 ILRM 229

HEALTH ACT 1970 S53(2)(a)

HEALTH (MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS) ACT 2001 S1

HEALTH ACT 1970 S45

HEALTH (MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS) ACT 2001

(COMMENCEMENT) ORDER 2001 SI 305/2001

DUBLIN CORPORATION v BUILDING & ALLIED TRADE UNION & ORS 1996 2 ILRM 547 1996 1 IR 468

O'ROURKE v REVENUE COMMISSIONERS 1996 2 IR 1

DOLAN v NELIGAN 1967 IR 247

ROGERS v LOUTH CO COUNCIL 1981 IR 265 1981 ILRM 144

BUCKLEY & ORS v AG 1950 IR 67

CONSTITUTION ART 15.5

SHELLY v MAHON 1990 1 IR 36

PINE VALLEY DEVELOPMENTS LTD v MIN FOR ENVIRONMENT 1987 IR 23

FORBES PIONEER BOAT LINE v BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS OF EVERGLADES DRAINAGE DISTRICT 1922 258 US 338

GRAHAM v GOODCELL 1931 282 US 409

WASHINGTON NATIONAL ARENA LTD PARTNERSHIP & ORS v TREASURER PRINCE GEORGES COUNTY MARYLAND 1980 410 A 2d 1060

US v HEINSZEN 1907 206 US 370

CONSTITUTION ART 43

O'BRIEN v MANUFACTURING ENGINEERING CO LTD 1973 IR 334

MOYNIHAN v GREENSMYTH 1977 IR 55

FOLEY v IRISH LAND COMMISSION 1952 IR 118

O'CALLAGHAN v COMMISSIONERS OF PUBLIC WORKS 1985 ILRM 364

DREHER v IRISH LAND COMMISSION 1984 ILRM 94

AG v SOUTHERN INDUSTRIAL TRUST LTD & SIMONS 1960 ILTR 161

HAMILTON v HAMILTON 1982 IR 466

ART 26 OF THE CONSTITUTION & PART v OF PLANNING & DEVELOPMENT BILL 1999,

RE 2000 2 IR 321 2001 1 ILRM 81

CONSTITUTION ART 43.2.2

TUOHY v COURTNEY 1994 3 IR 1

HEANEY v IRELAND 1994 3 IR 593

CONSTITUTION ART 26 OF THE EMPLOYMENT EQUALITY BILL, RE 1996 1997 2 IR 321

GEORGIADIS v AUSTRALIAN & OVERSEAS TELECOMMUNICATIONS CORPORATION 1994 179 CLR 297

PRESSOS COMPANIA SA v BELGIUM 1995 21 EHRR 301

EUROPEAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS & FUNDAMENTAL FREEDOMS FIRST PROTOCOL ART 1

ZIELINSKI v FRANCE 2001 31 EHRR 19

NATIONAL PROVINCIAL BUILDING SOCIETY & ORS v UNITED KINGDOM 1997 25 EHRR 127

CONSTITUTION ART 40.1

BRENNAN v AG 1983 ILRM 449

CONSTITUTION ART 26 OF THE EMPLOYMENT EQUALITY BILL, RE 1996 1997 2 IR 321

DILLANE v IRELAND 1980 IRLM 167

O'B v S 1984 IR 316

QUINNS SUPERMARKET v AG 1972 IR 1

MURPHY v AG 1982 IR 241

INCOME TAX ACT 1967

CONSTITUTION ART 15.4.1

CONSTITUTION ART 40.2.2

CONSTITUTION ART 40

CONSTITUTION ART 41

CONSTITUTION ART 44

CONSTITUTION ART 45

CONSTITUTION ART 46

VAN EMMERIK v JANKLOW 1982 454 US 1131

INCOME TAX ACT 1967 S192

INCOME TAX ACT 1967 S193

INCOME TAX ACT 1967 S194

INCOME TAX ACT 1967 S195

INCOME TAX ACT 1967 S196

INCOME TAX ACT 1967 S197

INCOME TAX ACT 1967 S198

NATIONAL PROVINCIAL BUILDING SOCIETY & ORS v UK 1980 25 EHRR 127

MIN SOCIAL COMMUNITY v SCANLON 2001 1 IR 64

CONSTITUTION ART 40.3

KELLY THE IRISH CONSTITUTION 4ED 1978

BLAKE v AG 1982 IR 117 1981 ILRM 34

MADIGAN v AG 1986 ILRM 136

STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS 1957

IARNROD EIREANN v IRELAND 1996 3 IR 321 1995 2 ILRM 161

CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 1961

WHITE v DUBLIN CITY COUNCIL 2004 1 IR 545 2004 2 ILRM 509

ESB v GORMLEY 1985 IR 129

HOUSING (PRIVATE RENTED DWELLINGS) BILL, IN RE 1983 IR 181

CONSTITUTION ART 43.2.1

EUROPEAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS & FUNDAMENTAL FREEDOMS

CONSTITUTION ART 34

CONSTITUTIONAL LAW

Bill

Validity - Charges for provision of in-patient health services - Retrospective legislation -Separation of powers - Right to life - Right to bodily integrity - Property rights -Hamilton v Hamilton [1982] IR 466; Minister for Social, Community and Family Affairs v Scanlon [2001] 1 IR 64; Re Planning and Development Bill 1999 [2000] 2 IR 321;Blake v Attorney General [1982] IR 117;Dreher v Irish Land Commission [1984]ILRM 94; O'Callaghan v Commissioners of Public Works [1985] ILRM 364; Madigan v Attorney General [1986] ILRM 136; Tuohy v Courtney [1994] 3 IR 1; Iarnród Éireann v Ireland [1996] 3 IR 321; White v Dublin City Council [2004] 2 IR 545; ESB v Gormley [1985] IR 129 and Re Housing (Private Rented Dwellings) Bill 1981 [1983] IR 181considered - Delegated powers - City view Press Ltd v An Chomhairle Oiliúna [1980] IR381 followed - Whether cause of action for restitution of monies paid without lawful authority to public authority - Corporation of Dublin v BATU [1996] 1 IR 468; O'Rourke v Revenue Commissioners [1996] 2 IR 1;Rogers v Louth County Council [1981] IR265 considered - Whether bad faith relevant -Murphy v Attorney General [1982] IR 241;National & Provincial Building Society v United Kingdom (1997) 25 EHRR 127 and Minister for Social, Community and Family Affairs v Scanlon [2001] 1 IR 64 considered -Health (Amendment) (No 2) Bill 2004 -Health Act 1970 (No 1) - Health(Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2001 (No 14)- Constitution of Ireland 1937, arts 15, 40.3and 43 - Declaration made pursuant to art 26of the Constitution that retrospective provisions of Bill unconstitutional but prospective provisions constitutional

1

DECISION of the Court pronounced on the 16th day of February, 2005, by Murray C.J.

2

This is the decision of the Supreme Court on the reference to it by the President of the Health (Amendment) (No. 2) Bill, 2004, pronounced pursuant to Article 26.2.1 of the Constitution.

The Reference
3

By order given under her hand and seal on the 22nd December, 2004, the President, after consultation with the Council of State, referred, in pursuance of the provisions of Article 26 of the Constitution, the said Bill to the Supreme Court for a decision on the question as to whether any provision of the Bill is repugnant to the Constitution or any provision thereof.

Proceedings on the Reference
4

Counsel were assigned by the Court to present arguments on the question referred to the Court by the President. Prior to the oral hearing counsel assigned by the Court presented written submissions to the Court, including submissions that certain provisions of the Bill were repugnant to the Constitution. Submissions in writing by and on behalf of the Attorney General were presented to the Court submitting that none of the provisions of the Bill were repugnant to the Constitution.

5

The oral hearing then took place before the Court on the 24th, 25th and 26th January, 2005. During the course of the hearing the Court heard oral submissions by counsel assigned by the Court and by counsel for the Attorney General.

The Legislation
6

The Bill in question is a short Bill and since the entire Bill is the subject of the question referred to the Court pursuant to Article 26 of the Constitution, it is appropriate to set out its terms in full:

" HEALTH (AMENDMENT) (NO. 2) BILL 2004"

7

...

8

AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 53 OF THE HEALTH ACT 1970. BE IT ENACTED BY THE OIREACHTAS AS FOLLOWS:

9

1. —Section 53 of the Health Act 1970 is amended—

10

(a) in subsection (2) —

11

(i) by substituting""Notwithstanding anything in the Health Acts 1947 to 2004 but subject to subsections (3), (4) and (9), the Minister shall"" for""The Minister may"", and

12

(ii) in paragraph (a), by substituting""to whom the in-patient services are provided"" for""who are not persons with full eligibility"", and

13

(b) by inserting the following after subsection (2):

14

"" (3) A charge imposed under regulations made under subsection (2) on or after the enactment of this subsection is not payable where the in-patient services concerned are provided to—

15

(a) a person under 18 years of age,

16

(b) a woman in respect of motherhood,

17

(c) a person detained involuntarily under the Mental Health Acts 1945 to 2001,

18

(d) a person who—

19

(i) is in a hospital for the care and treatment of patients with acute ailments (including any psychiatric ailment), and

20

(ii) requires medically acute care and treatment in respect of any such ailment,

21

or

22

(e) a person who pursuant to section 2 of the Health (Amendment) Act 1996, in the opinion of the chief executive officer of a health board, has contracted Hepatitis C directly or indirectly from the use of Human Immunoglobulin Anti-D or the receipt within the State of another blood product or a blood transfusion.

23

(4) The chief executive officer of a health board may reduce or waive a charge imposed on a person under regulations made on or after the enactment of this subsection if the chief executive officer is of the opinion that, having regard to the financial circumstances of that...

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