What mattered most to Vicky was not rhetoric but action

The nation is united in mourning the sad passing of Vicky Phelan, according to Social Democrats co-leader Róisín Shortall.

“The entire nation is united in mourning after the very sad passing of Vicky Phelan.

“Vicky was instrumental in uncovering the CervicalCheck scandal. Her refusal to sign a confidentiality agreement in 2018, during her High Court action, shone a light onto failings of the screening service.

“Vicky was a tireless advocate, not just for herself, but for the women of Ireland. She refused to accept the culture of omerta and evasion that too often accompanies scandals in Irish public life.

“Campaigning for more transparency and accountability in the Irish health service, as well as her terminal illness, must have taken a toll. But, Vicky never betrayed that. She was determined to see her campaign for improved health services succeed. This was not in her interest, but in the public interest.

“What mattered most to Vicky was not rhetoric but action. It is therefore crucial that, as part of her proud legacy, all of the recommendations of the Scally report are implemented in full.

“It is also essential that the new National Cervical Screening Laboratory at the Coombe Hospital is provided with the capacity to analyse CervicalCheck slides. This would fulfil a commitment, made in 2018, that those slides would no longer be sent to the United States for analysis.”

14 November, 2022


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