Statement from the Ministry of Health's Chief Medical Officer, Dr Don Mackie
The Ministry of Health is working with the Southern District Health Board on an issue raised within the breast screening service, BreastScreen HealthCare.
The issue relates to the reading of mammograms. An internal audit has identified that there may have been a delay in the diagnosis of breast cancer for 28 women over a three year period.
A routine 3-year audit currently underway is also raising concerns which we will also address in this investigation.
BreastScreen HealthCare screens around 16,000 women a year.
An 0800 number (0800 214 579) has been set up to take calls from people concerned about the issue.
A full and urgent investigation is jointly underway by senior officials at the Ministry of Health and Southern District Health Board, to confirm what has occurred and what actions need to be taken.