Several women who have been affected by the CervicalCheck scandal have expressed their anger at being unable to receive support.
Rosie Condron and Lyn Fenton say that they, along with other women who have cervical cancer, have been turned away from specialist help, as soon as doctors discover that they are a part of the 221+ support group.
The women met Dr Gabriel Scally yesterday, who launched his final update report on the CervicalCheck scandal. Although Dr Scally concluded that the CervicalCheck screenings have been vastly improved since the 2018 controversy, he found that there are still inconsistencies with how women affected by the scandal are being treated.
In his report, Dr Scally recorded that one woman said, “I’ve been treated like a leper,” after doctors probed her about being a member of the 221+ group while she was seeking medical treatment.
“It is very remiss at this time but this sort of attitude is still prevalent,” Dr Scally expressed with outrage in the report.
Rosie Condron and Lyn Fenton detailed how members of 221+ are being told by doctors that “their books are full and doors are closed”.
“They are in an awful hurry to get rid of us off their list”, the two women added to the Irish Independent.
The 221+ group has said that its members have mixed feelings about the report because it highlighted issues that should have been resolved a long time ago.
One of its members, Lorraine Walsh, detailed how women who have completed their cervical cancer treatment still want to have regular check-ups with their doctors.
“It is very sad because a lot of these women need continued care and are dependent on their clinicians to ensure their health into the future,” she explained.
In response, the HSE has said that from January, women who use CervicalCheck and get diagnosed with cancer in between screenings can request a review.
”We are working with patients including the 221+ group”, insisted Dr Nóirín Russell, the clinical director of CervicalCheck.