Minister for Health Dr James Reilly has said that consultants who do not cooperate in relation to the collection of money from insurance companies will be named and shamed.

The minister was reacting to severe criticism by the Public Accounts Committee about the HSE's failure to collect money from insurance companies.

He said the LRC agreement was quite clear that consultants had to return the forms within fourteen days.

Minister Reilly said they would also look at other aspects including how they could decouple the payment from the consultant.

However, he said if they are to proceed with this, the HSE has to be absolutely sure that the services paid for have been provided because this has been a problem.

Minister Reilly was speaking at the opening of the new emergency department at Letterkenny General Hospital in a three-storey medical block built at a cost of €24m.

The emergency department replaces a very small unit which was cramped and overcrowded, leading to the regular cancellation of clinics at the hospital and protest marches demanding a new facility.

The state-of-the-art building contains separate facilities for children and psychiatric admissions as well as an acute medical assessment unit which it is expected will reduce waiting times for patients.