Sinn Féin has described plans by the Minister for Health Dr James Reilly to restructure the Health Service Executive as more administrative than radical.

Under the plan, the HSE is to be replaced by a seven member directorate, which Minister Reilly said would pave the way for the introduction of Universal Health Insurance.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, the Sinn Féin health spokesman Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said the effects, if any, of the proposed changes were not known.

The restructuring plans were announced yesterday and will see directors appointed to oversee seven areas of the health service.

One of those individuals will act as director general and it is proposed that the positions will be filled from within the existing HSE structure.

Minister Reilly has said that legislation to abolish the agency completely will be brought forward shortly.