Calls For Health Minister To Be Held To Account Over Latest CervicalCheck Revelations

Photo © Pat Flynn

Clare’s Independent TD has stopped short of calling on the Health Minister to resign over the latest revelations in the Cervical Check controversy.

But Dr Michael Harty says Minister Simon Harris should be held to account over decisions that ultimately resulted in thousands of women being called for a retest, following an issue at a laboratory last November.

Clare FM’s Gavin Grace reports:


The HSE has confirmed that up to 6 thousand women who had a smear test carried out by CervicalCheck are to be called back for re-testing.

The issue arose after women concerned by the controversies surrounding CervicalCheck were offered free repeat smears, resulting in the need for 100,000 additional tests.

This effectively flooded the system, and the delay is now so long for the 6,000 tests in question that it’s taken longer than the recommended guidelines.

The Health Service Executive says the risk to women is low, but they’ll be invited to repeat the test to confirm the result and to provide reassurance.

Women who have been affected will be informed by the end of next week and they’re being assured that their tests will be prioritised.

CervicalCheck Victim Lorraine Walsh says it’s hard to have trust in the system.

Clare’s Independent TD has criticised the Government’s handling of the matter, saying they were informed last August and took too long to react.

Dr Michael Harty, who is the Chair of the Oireachtas Health Committee, believes that the problems have arisen as a direct result of decisions made by the Health Minister that went against medical advice.

He’s ruled out calling for Minister Simon Harris to resign, but he insists he must be be held to account.