The lead investigator in the Irish CervicalCheck scandal, Dr. Gabriel Scally said steps needed to be taken to ensure patients could properly question the way they were being cared for.
r Scally conducted the first CervicalCheck scoping study in 2018 after Vicky Phelan revealed that an undisclosed retrospective internal CervicalCheck audit was performed on the slides of women who had been screened and had cervical cancer.
Yesterday Stephen Teap, whose wife Irene died of cancer in 2017 after being falsely told her cervical swab results were clear, said her blood was on the hands of government and politicians.
Two screening labs admitted in the High Court that they had breached their duty by failing to report abnormalities in Irene Teap’s swab tests.
Mr Teap said he felt the HSE was hampering his wife’s ability to seek answers and justice for herself. He said they “didn’t get our answer” until the defendants amended their defense to admit some liability three weeks ago.
Mr Teap said justice for his late wife “prevented the Laboratories and the HSE from burying the truth with her”.
He said he now knew that if the slides were read correctly, “she would be alive today”.
dr Gabriel Scally said there is currently a “ridiculous ban” in the law preventing patients and their families from filing complaints about their clinical care and it urgently needs to be lifted.
“I think Ireland must be a rare if not the only country in the world where the Health Act 2004 has a law against people complaining about clinical care,” he told RTÉ Tomorrow Ireland.
“If it [the CervicalCheck scandal] In order to do anything, it must support that openness and honesty, and there must be a duty on all healthcare professionals to tell people the truth when things go wrong.
“People want three things; They want to be told the truth when something went wrong, they want an apology and someone to apologize, who is serious and who was part of the problem, but a real apology, not a letter from an admin.”
“The third thing is that they want to know more than anything that this is not going to happen to anyone. That it will be fixed and the system is not doing these things at the moment. The system takes people through the legal system to the courts when they need answers, and of course only people can afford that and it doesn’t deliver the truth,” he added.
dr Scally said Mr Teap and his family had endured a “long and traumatic” experience and argued there was “no reason why it had to be”.
He said the CervicalCheck program performed a “botched audit” and that there was no “adequate quality assurance” from some US labs.
dr Scally said the CervicalCheck is now working “fit and properly” and he is “very confident” that the lab service is “as good as it can be”.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/health/cervicalcheck-investigator-says-ridiculous-ban-on-patients-questioning-treatment-must-be-abolished-42207366.html CervicalCheck investigator says the “ridiculous ban” on patients questioning treatment must be scrapped