Tag Archives: Lorraine Walsh

Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health Dr Tony Holohan; Lorraine Walsh

This lunchtime.

RTÉ’s health correspondent Fergal Bowers, on foot of a Freedom of Information request, is reporting on correspondence he has seen between the Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health Dr Tony Holohan and CervicalCheck patient advocate Lorraine Walsh from March of this year.

Ms Walsh, from Galway, who was one of the women caught up in the CervicalCheck scandal last year, cannot conceive due to having had cervical cancer.

She is also one of the Government’s appointees to the CervicalCheck steering group.

Mr Bowers has reported that Dr Holohan – who is co-chairperson of the CervicalCheck Group – wrote to Ms Walsh on March 13  of this year taking issue with comments she had made on social media, and to print media, about him.

He reported the letter said her claims about him were “baseless” and it warned her that if she repeated the claims in public, there would be a “very strong response”.

He also asked her to withdraw the claims.

Mr Bowers reported that the letter was also released to Labour TD and the party’s health spokesperson Alan Kelly, following a parliamentary question and separate FOI request by him.

On RTÉ’s News At One, Labour TD Alan Kelly told Mr Bowers:

 “I sought this information under parliamentary question in early July. The department refused to give it to me. I had to chase this for two months.

“I had to repeatedly go to the Ceann Comhairle and it was only after the Ceann Comhairle wrote to the minister that basically, telling him, that this was against the constitutional responsibilities of a minister, that we’d got to a point where this information was released to me.

“I had no faith that this information was going to be given to me so I had to put in a Freedom of Information request on top of my parliamentary question.

“TDs shouldn’t have to put in Freedom of Information requests because they believe that their parliamentary questions are not going to be answered.”

Mr Bowers told News At One that a spokesperson for the Minister for Health Simon Harris said Mr Harris was not aware of the letter in advance of it being sent from Mr Holohan to Ms Walsh.

Walsh warned over repeating CervicalCheck management criticisms (RTE)

Rollingnews

Yesterday’s Sunday Business Post

Yesterday.

The Sunday Business Post published a lengthy interview with former chief of the HSE Tony O’Brien, his first interview since he left the organisation in May, following the cervical check scandal.

In the interview, Mr O’Brien said the Minister for Health Simon Harris acted like a “frightened little boy” during the CervicalCheck controversy and said he’s a weak minister obsessed with media coverage and “runs scared of headlines”.

He said the Public Accounts Committee acted like “a kangaroo court”, and he specifically accused Sinn Féin of being “destructive”.

He said Sinn Féin had “effectively swapped the balaclava for parliamentary privilege”, adding that “the bile and vitriol with which they attack public servants continuously is staggering”.

He also said he hoped a “sense of decorum and fairness would return to Irish political life and to the mainstream Irish media”.

Further to this…

Limerick mum-of-two Vicky Phelan has tweeted her thoughts on the interview.

In April Ms Phelan sued a US laboratory for misreading her cervical smear test and received a settlement of €2.5million in the High Court.

After Ms Phelan went public on the matter, it emerged that 221 women with cervical cancer, whose previous smear tests were reviewed after they received a diagnosis of cancer, were not told that their smear tests had actually been recategorised on review and that they could have been advised to have an earlier follow-up or warned of an increased risk of developing cancer.

Meanwhile, Cork dad-of-two Stephen Teap, whose late wife Irene was one of the 221 women, also responded to the article…

And Lorraine Walsh, from Galway, who is also one of the 221 women and who cannot have children as a result of her cervical cancer, also responded…

Ex-HSE chief: Harris is a weak minister, the PAC is a ‘kangaroo court’ (Susan Mitchell, Sunday Business Post)