The health service is to get an extra €635m next year.

Prescription charges, emergency department fees and hospital bed charges are to be frozen at current rates.

The extra funding breakdown is €305m in Exchequer funding plus once-off funding of €330m.

The once-off revenue relates to settlement of hospital bills by health insurers and receipts from UK authorities for treatment in Ireland of UK citizens.

Savings of €130m are to be secured in the health budget next year through procurement changes, including less use of agency staff and drug prescribing.

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar has said that despite increased funding for 2015, the service is not awash with cash.

He said that the Budget will still be tight, but said it was realistic and will reverse some of the harm of recent times.

Extension of the BreastCheck screening service will also begin next year for women in the 65-69 year age group.

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Minister for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin said that €25m is being allocated to deal with delayed discharges in hospitals.

In his Budget speech, he said a figure of €3bn is being allocated to support older people and disabled services in 2015 and €2.3bn for prescription drugs.

He said that next year over 2.1 million people - nearly half the population - will have a medical or GP visit card. 

Minister Howlin said additional staff will be provided so that patients can access mental health services. 

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation said the health allocation will not be sufficient to address major shortcomings facing the health service.

It said it was disappointed at the lack of allocation for the development of nurse/midwife led services and community intervention teams which support early discharge from hospital.

It said it would  look for immediate engagement with regard to the €25 million allocation set aside for delayed discharges.

However, it welcomed the extension of BreastCheck and investments in mental health teams.

The Disability Federation of Ireland said the budget does not restart the rebuilding of services and supports for people with disabilities, and leaves them still exposed to waiting lists and cuts.