Ireland Minister slams HSE memo on cervical cancer scandal as 'disgusting'

16:37  11 may  2018
16:37  11 may  2018 Source:   independent.ie

Explainer: Here's what you need to know about the new HPV test for cervical cancer

  Explainer: Here's what you need to know about the new HPV test for cervical cancer The accuracy of HPV testing is significantly higher than liquid based cytology testing, which is the testing used now, and is expected to result in fewer women receiving a false negative result. The minister said the testing for the HPV virus will be a more appropriate strategy for the cohort of women who have received vaccination against HPV. (The HPV vaccine prevents 7 out of 10 cervical cancers and is given to girls in Ireland age of 12 to 13 years).What’s the difference between a smear test and the HPV test?The smear test detects abnormal cells that may develop into cancer if left untreated.

As more details emerge in the the growing health cervical cancer controversy, our Health Correspondent, Eilish O’Regan The Health Minister , Simon Harris, said more than 1,500 additional women were diagnosed with the disease since 2008 whose cases were not recorded by CervicalCheck.

– Just 1,920 of the 7,521 call back requests to the HSE ’s emergency helpline have been returned to date due to the number of calls. – Health Minister Simon Harris is also expected to bring a series of cervical cancer tests scandal memos to cabinet tomorrow

Minister Regina Doherty Photo: Tony Gavin © Provided by Irish Independent Minister Regina Doherty Photo: Tony Gavin The alleged actions of the HSE detailed in a memo on the cervical cancer scandal are "disgusting", according to Minister Regina Doherty.

The Jobs and Social Protection Minister slammed the actions of those behind a memo written in 2016 that was released to the public yesterday.

It is now nearly two weeks since it emerged that 209 women, who were wrongly given all-clear test results, were the subject of internal CervicalCheck reviews.

Speaking on RTE Radio One's Morning Ireland, Minister Doherty said it was "very obvious" to her that those behind the memo had no concern for the 209 misdiagnosed women.

'Disgusting test error a robbery of life for me and my five children'

  'Disgusting test error a robbery of life for me and my five children' 'Disgusting test error a robbery of life for me and my five children'Emma Mhic Mhathúna (37) was told she had second-stage cervical cancer in 2016 - despite a smear test in 2013 coming back clear.

Another woman is suing the HSE , a cervical screening laboratory and two doctors in a case in which it is alleged anomalies in a smear test were missed. admin May 7, 2018 May 7, 2018 No Comments on More women suing over Cervical Cancer scandal .

Cervical cancer scandal 'a personal blow', says HSE 's O'Brien as he insists he will not step down. Health Minister Simon Harris is going to come under intense pressure this afternoon to publish a memo he received two weeks ago on the cervical

"We don't know who made the decision to pause letters [informing patients of their misdiagnosis]," Minister Doherty said.

"The language in those memos yesterday... I mean I very rarely agree with Alan Kelly but it's absolutely outrageous.

"For a caring profession, I think the very obvious part for me was the only thing they cared about was protecting themselves from the potential risk of a media campaign.

"What they clearly didn't care about was the 209 women who all have cancer, who are all fighting and struggling to save their lives.

HSE chief Tony O’Brien: 'The healthcare system needs to be differently shaped and sized.' Photo: Tom Burke © Provided by Irish Independent HSE chief Tony O’Brien: 'The healthcare system needs to be differently shaped and sized.' Photo: Tom Burke "It is so obvious it wasn't in anybody's intention or mind then they were writing these memos."

'I should not even have had cancer and now I’m dying', says mother-of-five after incorrect smear test

  'I should not even have had cancer and now I’m dying', says mother-of-five after incorrect smear test A MOTHER of five who was given incorrect smear tests results and went on to develop cancer has now been told she has cancer again, and it is terminal. Emma Mhic Mhathúna (37) was given the devastating news yesterday – just over a week after she was told she was one of the 209 women caught up in the CervicalCheck scandal.Speaking to the Irish Independent from her home in Kerry, she said she was just coming to grips with the knowledge that she need not have developed cancer at all, when she was dealt this blow.“I’m back to being numb. I was only coming back down to earth after last week and now I’m back in a whirlwind.

The director general of the HSE has again insisted he will not resign his position over the Cervical Check scandal . Earlier, Minister Harris admitted his confidence in the Health Service had been shaken by the Cervical Check scandal .

The Health Minister and the HSE Director General Tony O'Brien are giving a quarterly update to the Oireachtas Health Committee. The hearing is being over-shadowed by the Cervical Check scandal .

She continued; "They were writing these memos to defend and protect themselves... because God forbid if any women got a letter that she might run to the media, it's disgusting."

The minister said she does not feel she has accountability after the embattled HSE Director General Tony O'Brien took the decision to step down from his position yesterday.

His decision followed Children's Minister Katherine Zappone publicly calling for him to resign after the contents of the 2016 memo were revealed.

The Independent minister broke ranks to describe the latest revelations in the CervicalCheck scandal as a "game-changer".

Minister Doherty said this morning she wouldn't have allowed Tony O'Brien to step down.

"Well, to be very clear and this is only my personal opinion, Tony O'Brien resigning last night doesn't give me accountability.

"I know, and I heard last night, that [one of the women caught up in the cervical cancer scandal] Emma Mhic Mhathúna said she got joy, in a weird way I'm very pleased for her, because of the difficult circumstances that her and her children are in at the moment.

Harris criticised for 'appearing to laugh'

  Harris criticised for 'appearing to laugh' Harris criticised for 'appearing to laugh'Mr Mullen said: "Why did you appear to laugh about when and what debates you are going to do?"

The Health Minister and the HSE Director General Tony O'Brien are giving a quarterly update to the Oireachtas Health Committee. The hearing is being over-shadowed by the Cervical Check scandal .

It will also examine the quality of testing, the out-sourcing of analysing smear tests to a laboratory in the United States as well as the role of the HSE and Department of Children. Vicky Phelan, the Limerick mother of two who has terminal cervical cancer , and whose case lifted the lid on the scandal

"But we don't have accountability, we don't know who made the decision to pause the letters."

The minister also said Health Minister Simon Harris will be presenting "practical proposals" today about how to help the affected women and their families.

STRENGTH: Vicky Phelan with her husband Jim and children Amelia and Darragh. Photo: Fergal Phillips © Provided by Irish Independent STRENGTH: Vicky Phelan with her husband Jim and children Amelia and Darragh. Photo: Fergal Phillips "Today's Cabinet meeting is very important. It's all about the women affected, and the women who have passed away.

"The only thing about this is minding the women, which the HSE doesn't seem to get, which you don't get when you read the language in the memos.

"[Tony O'Brien] made his decison last night so let him off. I wouldn't have let him off, but I don't get to give my view. Simon Harris is bringing proposals today, practical proposals, about the treatment, be it experimental drugs, medical care and childcare."

She added; "The only thing we can do is fix the situation as it is at the moment.

"Our priority is to mind the 209 women and their families and help them in any simple way to fight for their lives."

HSE warned about potential issues with cervical cancer checks as early as March 2016

  HSE warned about potential issues with cervical cancer checks as early as March 2016 HSE warned about potential issues with cervical cancer checks as early as March 2016Director General Tony O'Brien received a memo from the company two years ago outlining the potential problems.

Hysterectomy: During this type of cervical cancer surgery, the uterus and cervix are removed. Radical hysterectomy: For all but a very small percentage of women with early cervical cancer , a radical hysterectomy will be necessary.

Uncover what Cervical Check, HSE , the The scoping review memo will be discussed at a Cabinet meeting today which will be dominated by the cervical cancer tests scandal , during which the In a further sign of the scale of the scandal , Tánaiste and Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney told

The minister also called for a change-up in the management structure of the HSE.

Contact

As of yesterday face-to-face contact still had to be made with seven of the women or relatives.

Seventeen women have died and their next of kin are now being traced.

HSE director Damien McCallion, now installed to oversee the running of the screening service, said he did not know how many women received a diagnosis of terminal cancer.

“One lady is in Russia and we’re trying to work through the Russian Embassy to make contact with her. And there are three people who had multiple hospitals involved and we’re trying to close those out.”

Emma Mhic Mhathúna © Provided by Irish Independent Emma Mhic Mhathúna Most women have been contacted and meetings have been held or arranged to discuss the audit and response, said the HSE.

Meanwhile, CervicalCheck said yesterday more than 3,500 women who contacted the helpline still need a callback.

So far it has returned 5,678 calls “and every effort is being made to ensure that contact is made as quickly as possible with all those who requested a callback”.

The HSE is also working to secure the names and details of around 1,500 other women who developed cervical cancer in the past decade who were registered with the National Cancer Registry but not subject to review by CervicalCheck.

Meanwhile, the organisation representing Irish staff involved in the reading of smear tests said yesterday that when Irish labs tendered to do the CervicalCheck work in 2008 they scored highly in all areas except cost.

The work went to Quest Diagnostics in Texas. Half the smears are now read in the United States and the rest in Dublin labs.

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Cervical cancer scandal: Terminally ill Vicky Phelan calls for radical overhaul of Irish health service .
She insists she does not want to die in vain .The mother-of-two, whose smear test was wrongly interpreted, told a parliamentary committee looking into patients impacted by the issue that health officials need to be held accountable.“I’m not interested in revenge,” Ms Phelan said. “That’s not what I’m here for.”The 43-year-old from Co Limerick said she wants the outcome of the Cervical Check controversy to be accountability.

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