Tuesday, 18 June 2019

Questions (324)

Micheál Martin


324. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Health if he and his officials received the second Scally report before the contract was extended to include all of the extra cervical tests done in 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24926/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

The Supplementary Report of the Scoping Inquiry follows on from Dr Scally’s Final Report published last September. On completion of that Report, I requested Dr Scally to do further work to address some outstanding issues relating to the laboratories. Dr Scally’s Supplementary Report was received in my Department on Tuesday 4th June. I met with Dr Scally on Friday, 7th June where he briefed me on his report and assured me that he saw no issue with the new capacity arrangements being made by the HSE. Government approved the Supplementary Report of the Scoping Inquiry on Tuesday 11th June, and it has now been published on the website of my Department.

In advance of providing the Supplementary Report, Dr Scally wrote to me on 19th February to advise that it would take longer than anticipated to complete his report. In that letter he advised that he had found no reason to revise the view that he took in his main report that, as far as can be ascertained, all the current laboratories have performance which is acceptable in their country.

Following a global search, Quest Diagnostics was identified by the HSE as able to provide the necessary additional capacity to ensure continuation of the CervicalCheck programme, something which was identified by Dr Scally in his Final Report last September as being of crucial importance. Quality assurance visits were undertaken, and the HSE advises that the contract with Quest for this additional capacity was signed on 7th June.