'We had no input': Cervical cancer patient criticises Department of Health over payment scheme

'We had no input': Cervical cancer patient criticises Department of Health over payment scheme
Lorraine Walsh

Cervical cancer patient and campaigner Lorraine Walsh has criticised the Department of Health for not involving patient representatives in the planning stages of the ex gratia payment scheme announced in March.

“The Department of Health did not involve us. We’re not happy,” she told RTE radio’s Morning Ireland.

The scheme will be open to the 221 women with cervical cancer caught up in the CervicalCheck controversy, or their next of kin in cases where they have died, who were not told of an audit that was carried out on their smear tests after their diagnosis.

There should have been earlier dialogue, she said.

“We had no input. We’re being asked to sign up to a scheme when we don’t know the details. We don’t know if it is suitable.

This is a missed opportunity. It’s not about the money. We would’ve loved to see an apology, an acknowledgement that the State let us down.

“That would go along way to restore trust. We’re dealing with anger, there’s a lot of anger here," she said.

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