Junior Health Minister Tim O' Malley has called for the country's eleven health boards to be abolished and replaced with one national structure with clear accountability and responsibility.

Minister O' Malley told the PD conference in Galway that the boards are not an effective way of managing and governing the health service.

He said money is being spent under the present structures without proper accountability, and that this has left the health service stuck in the sand with no movement forward.

Mr O'Malley also said he backed the proposal to ban smoking in pubs.