Thursday 17 October 2019

Judge appointed to give payments to women caught in CervicalCheck controversy

CervicalCheck
CervicalCheck
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

Mr Justice Aindrias Ó'Caoimh has been appointed to chair an independent assessment panel which will give ex-gratia payments to women and families caught up in the CervicalCheck controversy.

The payment will be for the non-disclosure of the results of an audit carried out on the smear tests of women who developed cancer.

The individual audits for 221 women, some of whom have since died, were issued to doctors in 2016 by CervicalCheck.They showed the  test results given to the women were wrong although it is unclear how many were negligently read.

Most of the women were not given the audit results until last summer after the Vicky Phelan High Court case revealed their existence.

The delay in giving the women the audit results breached the HSE’s policy of open disclosure.

Mr Justice Ó'Caoimh, who was appointed by Health Minister Simon Harris today, is a former Judge of the High Court, and of the Court of Justice of the European Union.

The ex- gratia scheme is “ designed to provide an alternative, non-adversarial and person centred option for women affected by the CervicalCheck non-disclosure issue,” said the minister.

The terms of the scheme are now being finalised and they will be considered at next week's Government meeting. Following this, the Minister will make a further announcement.

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