The Ceann Comhairle has said new ways of dealing with abuses of Dáil privilege will have to be found.

In an interview with RTÉ's The Week in Politics, Seán Ó Fearghaíl said the traditional reprimands may not work anymore.

"We have to find ways of dealing with the very limited circumstances ... in which members may deliberately or inadvertently abuse privilege," he said.

In the past the sanction of one's peers was sufficient to deter people from abusing Dáil privilege, but he said that sanction might now be considered a "badge of honour".

Next week a consultation group is set to be established by the Ceann Comhairle to draw up advice on how to deal with abuses of privilege.

This would "form the basis to address the problems that we undoubtedly have," the Ceann Comhairle said.

Mr Ó Fearghaíl said he would not predetermine the outcome of this process but options such as fining and suspending TDs would be examined.

The Ceann Comhairle also said that civil servants needed to be more daring in their response to new politics.

"In a parliamentary environment you are dealing with two elements. You are dealing with the political and the public service elements.

"The political has adapted and reacted more speedily than the permanent government has to the changed environment," he said.

Mr Ó Fearghaíl said there was a "very considerable caution" in the permanent government and not enough was being done to arm ministers with legislation that they could sell to the opposition.

The Ceann Comhairle suspects that civil servants in some departments are urging ministers to be over-cautious.