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Terminally ill mum gets HSE apology in negligent smear test


Patricia Carrick got apology

Patricia Carrick got apology

Patricia Carrick got apology

The HSE and a testing laboratory have apologised in the High Court to a terminally ill cancer patient over a smear test she had.

An apology was read out as Patricia Carrick and her husband Damien settled their legal action in which they said her smear test was misdiagnosed or misreported.

The 51-year-old mum of four was too ill to attend the Four Courts yesterday and was in hospital. Her husband Damien was in court as the apology was read out by Patrick Hanratty SC on behalf of the HSE and MedLab Pathology.


It said the organisations "acknowledge the... sample of May 31, 2016, was read in a manner that was negligent and in breach of duty.

"We wish to sincerely apologise that this occurred and for the consequences and distress that this has caused for you all."

The apology was addressed to Mr and Mrs Carrick, of Oranmore, Co Galway, and their four children, Ciaran, Rioghna, Sorcha and Eoin.

Outside court afterwards Mr Carrick told how on July 29 last year his wife received a phonecall to tell her she had cancer.

"Since that time our very private and happy lives in Galway have been marred by the horrendous situation that we found ourselves in," he said.

"She was diligent with her health and attended for her smear tests regularly.

"She was very conscious of the ramifications of missing a smear and was and is a firm believer in the screening programme provided by Cervical Check.

"If she was here today, she would be encouraging all women to go for smears regularly and to listen to their bodies."

Mr Carrick said his wife is calling on the Government to implement swiftly all the recommendations of the Scally Report into the CervicalCheck service "to ensure the women of today live to be the mothers of tomorrow".

Earlier, the court heard Mrs Carrick was diagnosed with cervical cancer last year and had treatment but suffered a relapse of the cancer in February and is now terminally ill.

Mrs Carrick and her husband had sued the HSE claiming the alleged failures in care caused an alleged delay in diagnosing her cancer.

These claims were denied but in court yesterday the HSE and MedLab Pathology apologised.

The details of the settlement are confidential.