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Gisborne Women To Be Told Results First

Gisborne Women To Be Told Results First

The Health Funding Authority (HFA) will focus first on informing Gisborne women affected by the cervical smear inquiry before establishing whether the level of misreading was unacceptably high.

HFA Personal Health spokseperson Tracy Mellor said today that the HFA priority was to ensure Gisborne women were contacted as soon as individual information was available.

Ms Mellor said that individual women would be contacted through their GP or smear-taker if high-grade abnormalities were found when the slides re-read in Australia were returned.

"Our priority will be to ensure that these women are receiving, or will receive, appropriate treatment," Ms Mellor said.

The re-reading results are coming through in batches and it won't be until all have been received and analysed that the HFA will be able to confirm whether the level of misreading was higher than usual.

"Releasing raw data throughout this process could prejudice our ability to resolve the issue. It would be totally wrong to give the public an incomplete picture of the re-screening by giving out interim results as they come to hand," Ms Mellor said.

"This is a time-consuming and detailed exercise and the HFA is of the firm view that we can provide the public with better information by taking this approach, rather than having information released piecemeal."

Ms Mellor said the re-reading exercise should be completed by the end of December and will be followed by an analysis of the results. Information about the analysis will be provided as soon as possible after that.

Ends

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