In Ireland, overall responsibility for the health care system lies with the Government, exercised through the Department of Health and Children, under the direction of the Minister of Health and Children.
The Irish health care system remains predominantly tax funded. Ireland has recently begun the process of introducing plain packaging of tobacco products, putting it on track to possibly being the first country in the WHO European Region to introduce plain packaging.
Geographical size: 69.797 km2
Population: 4.604.029 (2014)
Population as % of total EU population: 0,9 % (2014)
GDP: â‚¬ 164.049 billion (2013)
Official EU language(s): Irish, English
Political system: Parliamentary Republic
EU member country since: 1 January 1973
Seats in the European Parliament: 11
Currency: Eurozone member since 1 January 1999
Schengen area member? No, Ireland is not a member of the Schengen Area
Presidency of the Council: Ireland has held the revolving presidency of the Council of the EU 7 times between 1975 and 2013