Social Democrats co-leader Róisín Shortall TD today called on the Minister for Health to provide immediate answers on the latest failures of the CervicalCheck programme.

Deputy Shortall was commenting after it emerged that 52 of some 800 women impacted by the reported IT problems in the Quest Diagnostics laboratory have contracted the HPV virus.

She said:

“While the Rapid Review into the IT problems may be helpful as a look-back exercise, the Minister for Health needs to state what the current position is regarding the latest failures of the CervicalCheck programme.

“If women are to have any confidence in this programme, Minister Harris needs to provide immediate answers to the following questions:

1. Have all 52 women who tested positive for HPV on the Quest retest been notified of their results?
2. Have they all been referred for appropriate follow-up?
3. Have the other 750 women and their GPs been notified of their retest results?
4. What is the level of clinical risk for the 52 women who tested positive?
5. What action was taken by the HSE in February when they became aware of these problems with Quest?
6. Why were the Patient Advocates not informed of these issues at the Steering Group meeting on 26th June?
7. What action does the Minister intend to take to restore public confidence in CervicalCheck?
8. Does the Minister intend to review the Quest contract in light of these quality control failures?”

ENDS

17th July 2019