Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Questions (445)

Bríd Smith

Question:

445. Deputy Bríd Smith asked the Minister for Health if his attention has been drawn to the fact that a review (details supplied) suggests that twice as many high-grade abnormalities are missed by laboratories contracted to conduct the CervicalCheck screening programme in comparison to the referenced screening programme in the UK; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51752/19]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

The RCOG Expert Panel noted that the exercise most closely related to its Review is the English Cervical Screening Audit. The Minister notes that the findings of this much larger English Audit bear close resemblance to the findings of the RCOG Review.

As noted in the Aggregate Report of the Expert Panel, amongst the slides originally deemed negative by CervicalCheck, 55.1% were confirmed negative by the Expert Panel Review, which is almost identical to that seen (51%) in the English Audit. Almost 15% of CervicalCheck slides originally reported as negative were reported as low grade by the Expert Panel, compared with around 20% of original negatives in the English audit. 30% of CervicalCheck slides originally reported as negative were reported as high grade by the Expert Panel, compared with just under 20% of original negatives in the English Audit.

Of slides originally reported as low grade by CervicalCheck, the Expert Panel reported 66% as high grade; the rate of low grade to high grade was 47% in the English audit.

Of slides originally reported as high grade by CervicalCheck, there was 99% agreement with only 1% reviewed as negative or low grade, in line with similar findings in the English Audit.