Vicky Phelan has urged Simon Harris to provide assurances on how the adversarial nature of the proposals could be minimised. Photograph:  Niall Carson/ PA Wire

Justice Meenan to devise an alternative to court for dealing with CervicalCheck claims

File image of Vicky Phelan, one of the women affected by the CervicalCheck controversy, at Government Buildings. File photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

Judge Charles Meenan’s proposals will require women affected to prove negligence

Justice for Polio Survivors lobby guests as they gathered for this years People of the Year Awards in the Mansion House on Monday. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Justice for Polio Survivors critical of contribution compared to cash raised via fundraising

A file image of Vicky Phelan at Government Buildings following a meeting with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Women affected by controversy cautiously welcome Mr Justice Charles Meenan’s report

Vicky Phelan, the cancer patient whose case triggered the cervical cancer screening controversy in Ireland. Photograph: Niall Carson/ PA Wire

Delays led to hundreds of samples expiring before being tested

The deal between the HSE and the two labs will see the State effectively insourcing some of the work of examining smear tests. Photograph: iStock

Cost of examining smear tests in CervicalCheck programme to increase by €4m a year

Consultant cardiologist Dr Donal Murray: Large amounts of health spending are wasted on “committees and talking shops designed to avoid any serious and rational decision-making”.

Health decisions based on political expediency, says Sligo consultant Donal Murray

Campaigner Vicky Phelan:  ‘We’re living in a country where people think they can get away with it at a management level and not be sanctioned.’ Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Limerick woman speaks at launch of 221+ CervicalCheck Patient Support Group

Vicky Phelan, Stephen Teap and Lorraine Walsh at the formal launch of the 221+ CervicalCheck Patient Support Group in Farmleigh, Phoenix Park, Dublin on Sunday. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

For the 221-plus women affected by the CervicalCheck scandal, the hurt is undiminished

Stephen Teap, Lorraine Walsh and Vicky Phelan at the launch of 221+ in Dublin on Sunday.

Support group launched for 221-plus women and families affected by controversy

The rate at which labs process slides has slowed considerably since the summer because of concerns raised by the rate of litigation. Photograph: iStock

Staff in one private lab would be offered posts in public service under new proposals

The National Treatment Purchase Fund was allocated €75m in this week’s budget for initiatives to cut waiting lists next year. Photograph: Getty

Total on all waiting lists remains at 718,000 as inpatient waiting list falls for 14th month

There is some evidence that babies born by  Caesarean section can be at greater risk of allergies and asthma. Photograph: iStock

Caesarean sections accounted for 30.1% of all births in the State during 2015, study shows

The remains of Emma Mhic Mhathúna pass Government Buildings on Merrion Street, Dublin following her funeral Mass on Wednesday. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Number of women affected by scandal over misread smear tests likely to increase

Dr Gabriel Scally said in his report  that the decision to view 18 months as the cut-off for clinical impact was ‘undoubtedly flawed, and it is hard to see the logic for this’. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Total number of women affected will rise further, says Dr Gabriel Scally

Dr Gabriel Scally said the 18-month cutoff point   differed from practice elsewhere and was “undoubtedly flawed” and it was “hard to see the logic for it”. File photograph: Dara Mac Donaill/The Irish Times

Review author Scally tells Oireachtas committee of lack of clarity over HSE criteria for selecting 221 people identified

The extra 100,000 GP visit cards available for those on lower incomes will be widely welcomed, except by overworked GPs. File photograph: Getty Images

Despite extra funds, the service seems destined to keep running so as to stand still

A spending review has criticised the  HSE for ‘a re-occurring trend’ of significantly increasing recruitment toward the end of the year. Photograph: Getty

Review says health service consistently fails to manage within its budget allocation

A review of 73 patient deaths in Limerick hospitals between 2009 and May last year found none had died directly of the CPE superbug but it was “an associative factor” in eight deaths.

CPE gut bug ‘not directly responsible’ for any of 73 patient deaths reviewed in hospitals

CPE is the newest in a long line of bacteria that are extremely difficult to kill with antibiotics. Photograph: iStock

CPE, which is resistant to most forms of antibiotics, ‘contributed’ to deaths in hospital

A spokeswoman for the Department of Health said the Government established two parallel lines of investigation into the CervicalCheck controversy including a scoping inquiry led by Dr Gabriel Scally  (pictured) and an independent clinical expert review led by the Royal College of Physicians. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Quest and MedLab test 90 per cent of samples for the CervicalCheck programme

Hepatitis C is often referred to as a silent disease. Photograph: iStock

Use of revolutionary drugs has led to ‘a triumph of science’, says hepatologist

Letterkenny hospital

Hiqa inspection reports critical of handling of medicines in a number of hospitals

Vicky and Jim Phelan  pictured with their solicitor Cian O Carroll leaving the Four Courts on Tuesday. Photograph: Collins Courts

Phelan’s court case brought to light failings of the CervicalCheck screening programme

 Steven Pinker at the Shelbourne Hotel. “People express discontent when asked about the state of their country, but when asked about their own fortunes they’re not nearly as pessimistic.” Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

People are healthier, richer, safer and freer than ever, says psychologist Steven Pinker. But are they happy? ‘Happiness isn’t eve(...)

Journalist Paul Cullen: “A helicopter arrived to whisk me off a remote mountain valley within 20 minutes of my fall, thus reducing the risk posed by hypothermia. It took me down to the valley floor to a waiting ambulance, in which my injuries were assessed and stabilising treatment given.”

Case study: Paul Cullen’s trauma injury received speedy expertise in a German hospital

Pat Fitzpatrick was given the all-clear following a colonoscopy in Wexford General Hospital in 2013. He was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2015 and died last April. Photo: Dee Fitzpatrick

Financial pressures on BowelScreen programme led to lack of regular audits

Rene van der Poort with daughter Roseanne Theissen and grandson Ciaran Saakian:  “It’s terrible to be be told ‘off you go’ with no proper settlement arrangements.” Photograph: Dylan Vaughan

HSE assumed responsibility for Ballytobin facility after series of critical Hiqa reports

Ibrahim Halawa celebrates moments after his acquittal by an anti-terrorism court at the Wadi Natrun prison outside Cairo on September 18th. Photograph: Declan Walsh/The New York Times

Divergence between those who emphasise human rights and those prioritise Egypt’s stability

Ibrahim Talal, from Syria, on Agamy Beach, Alexandria: “This is not where I want to be.” Photograph: Peter Biro/European Union/Echo

More than 120,000 Syrians have been given asylum in Egypt but conditions are dismal

Central Mental Hospital, Dundrum. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Sums paid for professional fees and expert reports grew by 20 per cent since 2011

Hiqa’s chief executive Phelim Quinn pointed out most older people and people with a disability wish to remain at home. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Home inspections would not be needed as regulation would apply to service provider

Bishop of Waterford and Lismore Alphonsus Cullinan . Photograph: Diocese of Limerick

Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan says he now accepts Gardasil helps prevent cervical cancer

Patients on trolleys “have very poor or no dignity, privacy, confidentiality, suffer constant light and regular noise resulting in sleep deprivation which amounts to sensory torture, and are offered poor standards of infection control”. Photograph: Getty Images

Doctor warns of ‘dangerous’ overcrowding in emergency department of Tallaght Hospital

Some of the patients, who have genetic emphysema, have been on  Respreeza for up to a decade.

Manufacturer to end compassionate use programme for ‘life-changing’ drug Respreeza

The Catholic Bishop of Waterford and Lismore, Phonsie Cullinan. File photograph: John Mc Elroy

Bishop: ‘We have to do better than to give our boys condoms and our girls injections’

Elaine Howley, policy and advocacy director with the National Council for the Blind of Ireland: “Those of us who live with visual impairment incur extra costs every week so that we can just live ordinary lives.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Health, communications and household items more costly for visually impaired

Bishop Phonsie Cullinan, Bishop of Waterford and Lismore, says parents are being pressurised into agreeing to have the Gardasil HPV vaccine administered to their daughters.

Gardasil ‘lulling’ young girls into casual sex, according to Bishop Phonsie Cullinan

X-rays of the spine of a child with scoliosis after and before surgery.

HSE is set to miss target of reducing surgery waiting time

Minister for Health Simon Harris at the health committee on Wednesday

Cost overrun will go forward as a charge next year

The drugs, for conditions such as cancer, heart disease and depression, will be made available from November 1st. Photograph: PA Wire

Labour TD Alan Kelly criticises HSE of making ‘false’ announcement in July

Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin had the highest number of cancelled surgeries, at 262, according to HSE figures. Photograph: Getty Images

New data shows a ‘concerning’ number of surgeries cancelled for non-medical reasons

 Detective Superintendent Ashley O’Sullivan; Dr Lorraine Nolan, chief executive of the Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA); Heath Minister Simon Harris and Esther Keating from the Revenue’s Customs Service pose with illegal medicines seized. Photograph: Niall Carson /PA Wire

Garda and Customs operation results in 11-fold jump in sedative seizures

Schools should not offer meals containing foods and drinks high in fat, salt and sugar and will not receive funding for these if they do, according to the new nutrition standards. File photograph: Getty Images

Schools will not get funding for less healthy foods, according to new nutrition standards

Heel prick  test to detect PKU. Photograph: Simon Fraser/Science Photo Library

Kuvan is the only drug treatment for rare metabolic ‘heel prick test’ disorder

The new mobile catheterisation lab at University Hospital Waterford. Photograph: Patrick Browne

Lab will clear diagnostic backlog, but 24/7 cardiac unit still needed, say campaigners

Fatima, Omaima and Somaia celebrating the news their brother Ibrahim has been acquitted on on Monday. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Family fear he may be transferred to a holding cell, further delaying his release

Ibrahim Halawa celebrates moments after his acquittal by an anti-terrorism court outside Cairo. Photograph: Declan Walsh/The New York Times

Ibrahim’s release from Cairo prison may run into next week due to administrative delays

Ibrahim Halawa just moments after his acquittal in Cairo: The court must inform the interior ministry of its decision before his release process can get under way. Photograph: Declan Walsh/New York Times

Darragh Mackin says last minute checks are required before Irish man can leave Egypt

Ibrahim Halawa just moments after his acquittal in Cairo: court must inform the interior ministry of its decision before his release process can get under way. Photograph: Declan Walsh/New York Times

Legal procedures and travel document issues will delay release from Cairo jail

Dubliner Ibrahim Halawa celebrates moments after his acquittal by an anti-terrorism court at the Wadi Natrun prison outside Cairo on Monday. Photograph: Declan Walsh/New York Times

In front of Egyptian TV cameras judges read out hundreds of sentences in order of severity

The battle for the hearts and minds of the 30,000 parents who will decide this month whether their daughters should receive the Gardasil vaccine is long under way

30,000 parents will decide this month whether their daughters should get the HPV vaccine

Venous thromboembolism: the umbrella term includes conditions such as pulmonary embolism, when a blood vessel in the lungs becomes blocked. Photograph: BSIP/UIG Via Getty

Venous thromboembolism is third-largest cause of cardiovascular death

Under proposals facility would move to University of Limerick group

The Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association  says patients deserve to know they will have access to new medicines at least as fast as patients in comparable European countries

Pharma industry calls on Government to increase spending on new medicines

The HSE is calling on vulnerable groups to get the flu vaccine, though there is uncertainty about how effective this year’s formulation will be. File photograph: Getty Images

Doubling of cases in Australia, NZ leads to concerns of heavy winter flu season in Ireland

Staff  felt there was too much focus on clinical and medical matters in nursing homes,  detracting from the “homely” experience. Photograph: John Stillwell/PA Wire

Staff in Nursing Homes Ireland study feel too much focus on clinical and medical matters

The risk of cancers varies for different sites in the body. File photograph: Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA Wire

Research finds 4.5% of newly diagnosed invasive cancers attributable to excess weight

Hospital crisis: wards cherry-pick younger patients who are likely to have shorter stays, according to research published in the Irish Medical Journal. Photograph: Sean Warren/E+/Getty

Over-80s wait twice as long as under-20s for hospital beds, 10-year study finds

Since it was introduced in Ireland in 2010, more than 690,000 doses of the HPV vaccine have been distributed. Photograph: Joe Raedle/Getty

Majority of 650 girls requiring treatment were for symptoms like fainting and nausea

John Saunders: “These residences are not regulated and yet they provide care to a large number of vulnerable people with mental illness.” Photograph: Alan Betson

Call prompted by publication of report critical of Roscommon mental health services

Gardasil: the human papilloma virus vaccine protects against cervical and other forms of cancer. Photograph: Voisin/Phanie/Rex/Shutterstock

Watchdog says Gardasil’s benefits to 230,000 girls outweigh potential risks

Locum doctors: “The wages of locums are expressed in gross amounts, from which corporate tax, income tax and VAT have to be deducted.” Photograph: iStock/Getty

HSE example of locums paid €100,000 more than staff ‘grossly inflated’ their income

 St Vincent’s Private Hospital. Letsbuyhealthcare aims to strike deals with private hospitals by negotiating collectively for a large number of patients who need the same treatment.  File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Letsbuyhealthcare to bulk-buy procedures from hospital in similar manner to NTPF

Translarna annual cost is  €411,000 per patient. Photograph: PA Wire

PTC sues as Translarna is withheld from two boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Callum McCorriston:  the eight-year-old’s quality of life has improved greatly since he started taking a ground-breaking drug to treat his muscular dystrophy

Ground-breaking treatment of muscular dystrophy not part of State drug scheme

ASTI executive met to decide what to recommend on pay deal. Pictured are general secretary Kieran Christie and president Ger Curtin. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Asti will ballot members on proposed Lansdowne Road II agreement in coming weeks

‘Whilst I have never really cared about whether people think I am straight, gay or bisexual, I have noticed that the issue of my sexual orientation has dominated some discussion and has become somewhat of a distraction,’ Cllr John Keogh wrote on Facebook

Roscommon politician John Keogh writes about being gay on Facebook as it had become a ‘distraction’

Dr Pramod Kumar Agarwal, from India, and Dr Arslan Sohail, from Pakistan, at Naas General Hospital, Co Kildare. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Four out of every 10 doctors in Ireland are from overseas, and their number is rising fast

Minister for Health Simon Harris. The number of children at Our Lady’s Hospital Crumlin and Temple Street Children’s University Hospital waiting for more than four months for surgery has grown by 17%. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Simon Harris had said that no child with the condition would have to wait for surgery

Waiting list numbers for public hospital are up over 7,500 last month compared to July, figures from the National Purchase Treatment Fund show. File photograph: Getty Images

Figures shows Government initiatives having little impact on constantly rising figures

Calls for Simon Harris to intervene as drug firm ends compassionate use trial of Respreeza

Catherine Fowler with her father, Tim Fleming. She has campaigned for greater openness about medical mistakes after her father died from an aortic dissection which was misdiagnosed

Speaker will call for mandatory implementation of inquest recommendations

Up to 20 locum doctors did not report for work this week, according to the HSE, putting pressure on emergency departments in a number of hospitals. Photograph: Thinkstock

Agency workers voice anger at lack of training and opportunities for career progression

HSE director-general Tony O’Brien: the Health Service Executive says it has received no funding from Government to meet costs of pay rises and  pay deals. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Government tells HSE to draw up plans for making massive savings in health system

A human embryo. The Irish Fertility Society told the Minister for Health that family planning was “a private matter” that should not be interfered with by legislation. Photograph: Yorgos Nikas

Clinics say embryos created before change in rules should be used when women decide

The State’s hospitals are expected to overspend by €80m this year

Department of Health says HSE’s financial performance ‘extremely disappointing’

Simon Harris, Minister for Health, plans to commence the rest of  the Children and Family Relationships Act later this year. Photograph: Cyril Byrne / The Irish TImes

Irish Fertility Society has warned of ‘unintended consequences’ of new Act

Emergency Departments remained open on Tuesday. Photograph: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Tallaght, Navan and Portlaoise hospitals most affected by locum pay dispute

Overall trolley numbers are up 7 per cent so far this year compared to 2016, according to the union’s TrolleyWatch count. Photograph: iStock

Number of patients on trolleys up 27 per cent on same month last year, INMO says

Only 8.5 per cent of those surveyed were found to be supplementing their diet with vitamin D. Photograph: iStock

North and west have highest rates of deficiency Trinity College Dublin study finds

Planning permission granted by An Bord Pleanála clears the way for the €300m new National Maternity Hospital project to proceed.

St Vincent’s group will retain ownership of the site of the facility under new proposals

The hepatitis B infection of a patient, described by the IBTS as a “one in two million event”, occurred after a blood donation was made in the “window period” when the virus cannot be detected, even by the most sensitive tests available.

Episode occurred after blood donation made in ‘window period’ when virus undetectable

Gardasil is the vaccine used in the vaccination programme for girls in their first year of secondary school. File photograph: Vincent Kessler/Reuters

Tony O’Brien accused groups opposing cancer-linked treatment of ‘emotional terrorism’

At least 65 non-specialist doctors have been appointed  consultants  in recent years. Photograph: Thinkstock

Regulator powerless when non-specialist doctors appointed to consultant posts

The National Maternity Hospital will move from Holles Street to St Vincent’s

An Bord Pleanála approves move after ownership issue caused controversy this year

There was a 12-fold increase in the number of complaints made against overseas doctors last year, according to the Medical Council.

Medical Council says no extra action needed in 85% of cases after an initial examination

 Gardasil  vaccine: the HSE and the World Health Organisation have repeatedly issued assurances that it is safe and effective.   Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

The known facts are that Gardasil is safe and effective and that potential side-effects are extremely rare

A patient attending an Irish hospital was recently infected with Hepatitis B from a routine blood transfusion

First known case of its kind in Ireland described as a ‘rare, one in two million event’

Gardasil is the vaccine used in the vaccination programme for girls in their first year of secondary school. Photograph: Vincent Kessler/Reuters

HSE ramps up cervical cancer vaccine campaign in response to ‘disinformation’

Minister for Health Simon Harris with Children’s Hospital Group chief executive Eilish Hardiman and project director John Pollock at St James’s. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Move to take place after the transfer of staff to the new children’s hospital at St James’s

Simon Harris said it was his “ambition” to extend free GP care under-12s initially, before introducing it for all children. Photograph: iStock

Minister: Agreement must be reached ‘collaboratively’ with family doctors

Stroke is the third biggest killer of Irish people after heart disease and cancer, and the single biggest cause of severe physical disability. File photograph: iStockPhoto

Prof Joseph Harbison: ‘No one ever got fired in HSE for maintaining the status quo’

In an ideal scenario, stroke is identified quickly and the patient  whisked to a specialised hospital where the waiting medical team administer clot-busting drugs, and then scan the brain so the location of the clot can be established. Photograph: iStock

Less than half of Irish stroke patients will be treated in a dedicated stroke unit

European Heart Index points to “alarming” obesity levels as evidence of Irish people’s unhealthy habits. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Index also mentions ‘notorious’ waiting lists as holding back progress in State

The president of the Irish Dental Association says he sees a lot of patients who are suffering dental erosion due to consumption of carbonated drinks, including sparkling wines. Photograph: Getty Images

Combination of carbonation, sweetness and alcohol has the potential to cause tooth sensitivity and enamel erosion

More than 200 inmates in Mountjoy Prison recently presented during a two-day mass screening. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Innovative new programme a ‘success story’ that could be replicated elsewhere

New figures showed the highest ever level of trolley overcrowding for the month of August. Photograph: Pierre Andrieu/AFP/Getty Images

Rise in overcrowding blamed on increase in admissions of older patients

The Department of Health will move from Hawkins House in central Dublin to new offices in Baggot Street. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Civil servants are set to move to new offices on Baggot Street despite staff misgivings

The flaw may result in thousands of patients having to have medical tests redone

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