Published: 29 March 2023

Our 2023 National Service Plan

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has approved the 2023 National Service Plan (NSP) for the HSE. The NSP outlines the health and social care services we will provide nationwide within the allocated budget of €21.124 billion. This includes a €240.2 million investment in new service developments.

Our Priorities for 2023

The aims of the 2023 NSP are to:

  • build hospital and community services capacity
  • improve access to services, including women’s healthcare and mental health services
  • enhance prevention and early intervention work
  • deliver the Waiting List Task Force
  • implement improvements in the security and resilience of critical national infrastructure

Speaking about our priorities for 2023, HSE Chairman Mr Ciarán Devane said:

“Supporting the delivery of universal healthcare and delivering the reforms outlined in Sláintecare remain the priorities for the HSE. Waiting lists for scheduled care in hospitals and long waits in emergency departments, particularly for older people and those who have more complex needs, remain a concern and were a priority for action during the year. Our reform programme continues to seek to address this, as well as addressing waiting times for mental health and community-based services, with the ultimate aim of improving the patient / service user experience through innovative initiatives including the ongoing digitisation of our health service.”


By the end of 2023, the number of general acute beds added since 2020 will increase to 1,179. The number of additional critical care beds is expected to rise to 352. These figures can change for operational and service reasons.

Community healthcare networks

The development of 96 Community Healthcare Networks around the country will continue. This work includes:

  • setting up 30 community specialist teams for older persons
  • setting up 30 community specialist teams for people living with chronic disease
  • increasing access to community diagnostics
  • delivering 23.9 million home support hours to 55,910 older persons

Mental health services

With an additional budget of €14 million, we will see a total of 12,635 CAMHS referrals. This is a 17% increase on our target since 2019.

Disability services

An additional €25 million will be spent on disability services.

This will include:

  • over 70,000 additional hours of personal assistant support to people with disabilities
  • 1,250 new day services placements for school leavers and graduates of rehabilitative training, in line with the New Directions policy
  • improving the delivery of specialist community-based disability services
  • increasing capacity for day, respite, multi-disciplinary, residential and personal assistant services
  • progressing the Assessment of Need process in line with legislative obligations

Recruitment of staff

The workforce will increase by more than 6,000 Whole Time Equivalents (WTE), or full-time staff members, in 2023. Approximately 10,500 staff will be recruited to replace those that will retire or leave during the year. Our aim is to provide a rewarding and fulfilling workplace for all of our staff.

Speaking about the 2023 NSP, HSE CEO Bernard Gloster said:

“This €21.1 billion revenue budget is an enormous investment by the state. We will use it to continue to improve access both to community and acute hospital services and to reduce waiting times, waiting lists and emergency department congestion. We take our direction from the priorities set by the Minister for us which are several, but at the top of the agenda are access and urgent care improvements. Improving access and service for each individual who needs our support must be our sole motivation and a responsibility we take seriously each day."

"During 2023, we will also commence implementation work in preparation for the establishment in 2024, in line with Sláintecare, of the six Regional Health Areas (RHAs)."