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Image / Editorial

Vicky Phelan urges women to continue to go for smear tests despite delays


By Jennifer McShane
26th Jan 2019
Vicky Phelan urges women to continue to go for smear tests despite delays

Following the news this week that approximately 6,000 Irish women may need repeat smear tests following a delay in examining their original samples, tireless health campaigner Vicky Phelan took to social media this weekend to plead with women to continue to get tested.

This also comes on the back of further developments on Saturday morning, after a report in the Irish Independent revealed that women who are waiting months for the results of cervical screening and are found to have high-grade abnormalities could be facing another delay of up to six weeks for further investigation.

Related: 6,000 Irish women may have to re-do their smear tests, the HSE confirms

“I have not weighed in on the latest cock-ups concerning our screening programme, leaving it instead in the very capable hands of our two patient advocates Stephen Teap and Lorraine Walsh who are doing sterling work on the Cervical Check Steering Committee by keeping the work of the Committee focused on implementing Gabriel Scally’s 50 recommendations,” Vicky wrote.

“We will NOT rest until these recommendations are implemented. Until then, there will, unfortunately, be more stories like those we read about this week. Please, please continue going for smears and bear with the screening programme,” Vicky wrote.

Related: ‘Do not ignore this’: Vicky Phelan urges women to listen to their bodies

She also reassured that with her help and the efforts of fellow campaigners, Ireland would have a cervical check system that everyone would believe in.

“We WILL get there and we WILL have a programme that we can trust and one which will be on a par with the best in the world. That is what Stephen, Lorraine and myself and many others in the HSE are striving for.”

The Limerick-native continues to do incredible work raising awareness, all while she is fighting cervical cancer herself. Last week, she also urged women to listen to their bodies and to ensure they don’t ignore any signs or symptoms.

For more information on booking your smear, visit CervicalCheck.ie.