Questions need to be answered on smear tests being recalled

02 April 2019

Labour Party Health spokesperson, Alan Kelly TD, has said that it is not right that women who are going through the CervicalCheck programme are having their smear tests expire while those who can afford to pay for tests are getting their tests analysed within three weeks.

Deputy Kelly said:

“It is not good enough that over 1,000 women have had their smear test recalled because they were not analysed in time.

“What exists now in our health service is a fast track for those who can pay for smear tests to be carried out, getting results within two to three weeks while women who get their smears done through CervicalCheck are waiting up to 33 weeks.

“Questions need to be answered on these smear tests being recalled. Were any of the tests that are now being recalled already repeat tests? Has the Minister for Health or his officials contacted the labs to get an exact breakdown on if there will be further recalling of smears as the waiting time continues to rise? Are the labs continuing to not distinguish between women getting smear tests regularly under medical advice and women who get routine smears every three years?

“Between the news yesterday that the labs want to suspend the programme for up to four months and now this, this is a critical juncture for CervicalCheck.

“Irish women who are waiting for smear results through CervicalCheck especially those at-risk, need answers, sooner rather than later.”

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