HSE chief Tony O'Brien steps down amid cervical smear scandal

HSE chief Tony O’Brien

HSE chief Tony O’Brien

He said, notwithstanding the clear communication failures surrounding the CervicalCheck Audits, he is confident that the Scally Review will demonstrate the quality and value of the CervicalCheck Programme once it is complete.

They include free medical cards for all women affected or their next of kin, counselling services and covering the cost of any medicines prescribed by their doctor.

In a statement released by the HSE on Thursday evening, it has been announced that the Director General Tony O'Brien would be stepping down from his position with nearly immediate effect, with his last day being Friday 11 May.

Varadkar, a doctor and former health minister, said the government shared the anguish of women who were given inaccurate results and announced a support plan for women caught up in the scandal.

Speaking to Irish national broadcaster RTÉ outside Government Buildings in Dublin, Mr Harris said he wants full accountability and that he was "disgusted" at what has emerged in memos released by the HSE.

"We also need to know who else knew within the HSE, within the Department of Health and indeed within political circles as well".

Mr McGrath said that questions remain, despite the resignation of Tony O'Brien.

"Secondly, I've asked him to make sure that Cervical Check continues to receive all of the resources it needs to return the phone calls to women".

"Would I be happy for my children or my mother to see how I behave?"

"Things like meeting the costs of drugs, medical cards, medical costs, transport costs to and from the hospital, childcare costs".

Minister Harris will meet with Mr Connaghan on Monday.

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