Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Gisborne Cervical Screening Inquiry Report

Gisborne Cervical Screening Inquiry Report Released

Health Minister Annette King says legislation will be passed this year to satisfy key recommendations of the report into Under-Reporting of Cervical Smear Abnormalities in the Gisborne region.

Releasing the report at a public meeting in Gisborne today, Mrs King said she accepted its recommendations, and was working on how best to implement them as soon as possible.

"My thoughts are with the women of the Gisborne region at this time, particularly the women most directly affected by the Inquiry. It has been a traumatic time for them and their families and I hope the report's release will be an important step in their healing process," Mrs King said.

"I have written to the women affected and apologised for the events of the past decade that led to the Inquiry. The onus is now on us to keep putting into place systems to help prevent the likelihood of such circumstances occurring again."

Mrs King said the Inquiry team of Ailsa Duffy QC, Druis Barrett and Professor Maire Duggan had made 46 recommendations, of which 27 were already completed or were in the process of implementation.

"Work will continue or begin on all the recommendations as a high priority, but before some of them can be put in place, legislative changes are needed. This refers particularly to effective auditing, monitoring and evaluation of the programme.

"The Government will consult on this over the next few weeks, but I agree with the Inquiry that access to all files is essential if we are to audit the programme in a way that gives us confidence. We need quality assurance processes.

"The Government has agreed to introduce an Omnibus Bill this year. It will be split into two parts. The first part will be passed this year, and it is anticipated it will deal with amendments necessary to evaluate and audit the programme effectively, and it will also deal with the immediate amendments proposed by Helen Cull's report on adverse events, including mandatory reporting of bad practice and temporary suspension of practitioners. The second half of the Bill will deal with less pressing issues."

Mrs King said she supported the Director-General of Health, Dr Karen Poutasi, who had made a commitment to ensuring that lessons will be learned from the Inquiry.

"The report positively endorses the work of Clinical Director Dr Julia Peters and the National Screening Unit in building a programme with strong quality standards and monitoring processes. Dr Poutasi is committed to ensuring the programme remains well-managed and resourced. She knows the best way to make that happen is to evaluate progress regularly on implementing the recommendations.

"That is why I have accepted her recommendation that I invite an international expert to review implementation of the recommendations in six months and again in a year. I am delighted that Dr Euphemia McGoogan, who gave evidence at the Inquiry, has accepted that role. I will visit her when I am in Britain next month. Dr McGoogan is a senior lecturer in pathology at Edinburgh University and patient services director pathology at the Lothian University Hospitals NHS Trust."

Mrs King said she had also asked for monthly updates from the ministry for the next six months. "I will be making those updates public so women can see how much emphasis we are placing on getting the programme exactly right. Screening does save lives. In the words of the report, the work that has been done on the redevelopment of the programme will go a long way to reducing the likelihood of an incident such as that which occurred in Gisborne happening again."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Terror in NZ: Mosques Attacked in Christchurch

• There have been two attacks at the Masjid Al Noor Mosque next to Hagley Park, and at the Linwood Masjid Mosque in the suburb of Linwood, Christchurch
• Police commissioner says 50 confirmed dead in Christchurch terrorist attacks. One man charged with murder appeared in court on Saturday, two more apprehended - working to understand their involvement
• PM Jacinda Ardern has described it as a "terrorist attack" by those holding extremist views. She says NZ's gun laws will change.
• The national security threat level has been increased from low to high.
• Commissioner Bush said there were explosive devices attached to one vehicle that were stopped by police and these have been made safe by Defence Force personnel.

For the Latest: Scoop Search - Christchurch

Parliament's Condolences: PM's Statement On Christchurch Mosques Terror Attack
Al salam Alaikum. Peace be upon you. And peace be upon all of us.
Mr Speaker the 15th of March will now forever be a day etched in our collective memories... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Why The Government Shouldn't Run The Christchurch Massacre Inquiry
At Cabinet yesterday, the promised changes to our gun laws cleared their first hurdle. According to PM Jacinda Ardern, Cabinet agreed collectively “in principle” on a set of proposals to change New Zealand’s gun laws... Yesterday, Ardern also announced an inquiry into the background to the mosque attacks and into the role played by the SIS, GCSB, Police, Customs, and Immigration. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The School Climate Strike

Locally, the school strike has won a ton of support for bringing climate change to the fore. Yet the strikers don't want mere expressions of support. They want action. More>>


"Grabbed And Struck In The Face": Greens Co-Leader Attacked While Walking To Work

Green Party co-leader James Shaw was the victim of an unprovoked attack when he was walking to work in Wellington. More>>


████████ ████ ███: Latest OIA Statistics Released

The latest statistics cover 110 agencies that collectively completed 18,106 official information requests between July and December 2018, a 16.4% increase on the 15,551 requests for the previous six months. More>>


'Hit And Run' Inquiry: New Legal Action Over Secrecy

The lawyer representing the Afghan villagers in the inquiry into Operation Burnham has launched legal proceedings calling for a judicial review in the investigation. More>>


From Hydro Plan To...: Mokihinui River Land To Join Kahurangi National Park

A total of 64,400 hectares of conservation land in the Mokihinui River catchment on the West Coast north of Westport, including 15 km of riverbed, is being added to Kahurangi National Park. “Adding this area, roughly half the size of Auckland City, to Kahurangi is the largest addition of land to an existing national park in New Zealand’s history,” Eugenie Sage said. More>>





InfoPages News Channels