Cole-Hamilton demands debate on cancer screening failures

Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today called for the Scottish Parliament to hold the SNP Government to account for delaying the reporting of serious failures in the cervical cancer screening programme.

On 13th July Parliament will be recalled to discuss the latest Covid-19 developments. Mr Cole-Hamilton is calling for an additional debate to be scheduled on that day after significant revelations including confirmation from the National Clinical Director Jason Leitch that the decision not to disclose issues with the screening programme until the final day of the parliamentary term was a political one rather than a medical one.

Mr Cole-Hamilton said:

"Ministers gave parliament only a cursory opportunity to ask questions before shutting up shop for the summer.

"I was shocked when ministers told me that they had known about this failure since March. Now the National Clinical Director has stated that the decision to announce this to Parliament at the last possible moment was a political decision, not a medical one.

"This is not just a question of scrutiny. Women have been failed. Thousands will be reeling at this news. They deserved to know about the risk to their health months ago.

"With parliament being recalled in a fortnight to take stock of the coronavirus situation, we must also have a chance to hold​​​​​ the Health Secretary to account over these decisions."

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