Freephone information line: 1800 45 45 55

Cervical Check Daily Report 25 May 2018

(25 May 2018)

The HSE Serious Incident Management Team continues to work to respond to the failings revealed by the CervicalCheck audit. This report is being provided daily to outline and provide a progress update on the response to this evolving situation. 

1.    Contact with women directly affected

Hospitals have been working since the SIMT was established to contact all the women affected and to discuss the audit with them.

Cases where the audit showed their test could have provided a different result: 209 women
Contact made to date with: 207 women /families

The HSE Community Health Organisations have contacted the majority of the women affected to offer a range of supports to assist them. This process is being coordinated with the relevant acute hospitals. The process will continue to be rolled out to all women directly affected.

The package of services being made available was announced by Government on Friday May 11th and will include medical cards, counselling and psychology supports, reimbursement of medicines and treatments, childcare and travel costs and arrangements are being put in place as a matter of urgency.

2.    Women diagnosed with cancer but not notified to CervicalCheck

The HSE is working with the National Cancer Registry of Ireland and the Department of Health to identify any other women who had cervical cancer during this time, who may also have had a Cervical Check test.

HSE will conclude the matching process with the National Cancer Registry in the next week. We will then agree a communication process with the International Clinical Expert Review Panel for those women identified by the National Cancer Registry matching process. These will be the women who have been identified by the National Cancer Registry as having cervical cancer and who have had cytology with the national screening service.

The International Clinical Expert Review Panel is being established as part of the Government’s investigation into the national cervical cancer screening programme (CervicalCheck).  The terms of reference for this Expert Review Panel are currently under consideration by the Department of Health.

The main purpose of the panel is to provide women with facts and independent expert assessment of those facts.  The review will be carried out under the auspices of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists with expert input from the British Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology.

The scoping enquiry into the cervical check screening program, lead by Dr Gabriel Scally, has commenced its work. Further information can be found at

3.    Contact from women concerned about the CervicalCheck audit

Over the past number of weeks women in Ireland have been understandably worried following the failures in communication about this audit. The information line established on April 28th continues to operate and women are being offered the facility to receive a call-back from a member of our clinical staff.

  Calls Answered Call back requests Avg. wait times
15/5 1266 443 0.11
16/5 554 162 0.09
17/5 540 126 0.05
18/5 496 81 0.05
19/5 22 14 0.05
20/5 88 22  
21/5 367 125 0.06
22/5 422 74 0.11
23/5 340 26 0.11
24/5 330 49 0.09
25/5 186 30  
Total 21,414 11,371  

To date, 11,293 calls have been returned to women, and every effort will continue to be made to ensure that contact is made as quickly as possible with all those who have requested a call back. While the volume of incoming calls has fallen, there are additional call backs required to fully close out some earlier calls. Some more complex cases require more time to be spent on a call in order to adequately address the queries raised by the women affected. In addition CervicalCheck is responding to call back requests made via email or social media. We have teams working in Limerick, Cork, Waterford and Dublin, as well as Public Health specialists and hospitals and right across the country, making contact with all of the women who have requested a call back.

A number of women have requested copies of personal data and CervicalCheck are in the process of gathering this information in order to release these records to those women as soon as possible.

4.    Public Information - Advice and Support for Women

Every effort is being made to provide information and advice to women who may be concerned. Information and advice for women is being updated on and is being provided on a range of channels as described below.

The clinical advice is that women who have had normal test results in the past can continue to participate in the cervical screening.

Women should be directed to in the first instance for information and advice on what to do.

Visits to 316,913 since April 26
1,006,560 page views, 28,529 checked the register
Top Sources of traffic to Organic searches, direct, social media, paid search, news sites
Video advice for women with normal results

Featuring Dr. Peter McKenna, Consultant Obs/Gynae. Views: 10,522

Featuring Dr. Maitiu O’Tuathail, President of NAGP. Views: 117.6k

Facebook Posts Cervical Check/HSE


Comments on page

Private Messages


1.8 million impressions

1,605 comments reviewed by HSE Comms

384 all replied to by HSE Comms

Twitter Activity:

80 Tweets since Friday 27th April

469,573 impressions

14,911 engagements

Text messages issued to women who called the Information line

Approx. 7,000 SMS issued May 3

Text message sent to approx. 7,500 people on May 8 apologising for the delay in returning calls

Google Search Ads 267,008 impressions and 31,486 clicks since May 3rd

5.    Health Professional Information - Advice and Support for Women

The clinical advice is that women who have had normal test results in the past can continue to participate in the cervical screening programme according to their normal schedule, and women with a history of normal test results are advised to read the information on and then make contact with their GP if they remain concerned. CervicalCheck has issued an update to GPs and smear-takers participating in the programme, and to colposcopy clinics and cancer centres nationwide.

Information for GPs and Smeartakers

Published on May 2
Posted to GPs/Smeartakers May 2 and 3

Updated Q&A and Advice Sheet for Women being published on May 4

A further communication issued to all GPs on May 9 advising them of the reimbursement arrangements for women who have requested an additional smear. This along with an updated Q&A is now available on

Information for Colposcopy Clinics and Cancer Centres Circulated by email May 3
Advice Sheet for Women Published on and circulated to a wider range of patient and advocacy organisations May 4

Information about the CervicalCheck audit, and advice for anyone concerned, is on

Is cuid den tSeirbhís Náisiúnta Scagthástála é CervicalCheck
Bosca Oifig Phoist 161, Luimneach
Saorghlao 1800 45 45 55
CervicalCheck is part of the National Cancer Screening Service
PO Box 161 Limerick
Freephone 1800 45 45 55

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Is cuid den Rannóg Sláinte agus Folláine i bhFeidhmeannacht na Seirbhíse Sláinte í an tSeirbhís Náisiúnta Scagthástála. Cuimsíonn sí BreastCheck – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Cíoch, CervicalCheck – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Ceirbheacs, BowelScreen – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Putóige agus Diabetic RetinaScreen – An Clár Náisiúnta Scagthástála Reitiní do Dhiaibéitigh.

The National Screening Service is part of the Health and Wellbeing Division of the Health Service Executive. It encompasses BreastCheck – The National Breast Screening Programme, CervicalCheck – The National Cervical Screening Programme, BowelScreen – The National Bowel Screening Programme and Diabetic RetinaScreen – The National Diabetic Retinal Screening Programme.