CervicalCheck: briefings on Scally report may be brought forward

Minister for Health Simon Harris will seek to bring forward a briefing for those affected by the CervicalCheck controversy by 24 hours after they expressed anger at leak of parts of a report into the affair.

Mr Harris said it was “extremely regrettable” that parts of 200-page scoping report by Dr Gabriel Scally, the public health veteran, were published in The Irish Times and RTÉ ahead of the publication of his report tomorrow.

It was reported today that Dr Scally believed a commission of investigation was not required into the controversy, despite the stated view by Mr Harris that a commission be held into the controversy.

He said the report should be published and the views of “a very eminent expert” asked to investigate the controversy should be considered.

“All along I wanted them to be briefed first.”

Mr Harris said he will take their response and views very seriously before he makes a decision on whether or not a commission of investigation should be held.

“I intend to let the report be published, to meet with Opposition, meet with people impacted by this debacle. If they still feel a need then we will have one, it is important to let the report be published first.”


Mr Harris said “truthfully” he does not know who leaked the details of the Scally review but he intends to find out. However, it is not a priority for him today.

Mr Harris said he did not know how a leak of some of the findings emerged in the media but said there were 50 recommendations in the report and none of these had been reported as yet, he told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland.

The Minister said he was going to see if he could brief the women and families in advance of the Cabinet meeting tomorrow and said he hoped to be in a position to recommend all 50 recommendations, subject to advice from the Attorney General.