State Claims Agency calls for fresh talks in latest cervical cancer case

37-year-old Limerick woman Ruth Morrisey was misdiagnosed twice

State Claims Agency calls for fresh talks in latest cervical cancer case

Ruth Morrissey and her husband Paul leaving the High Court Dublin, 26-07-2018. Image: Leah Farrell/RollingNews

The State Claims Agency has said it wants to resume mediation with a 37-year-old woman who was wrongly told she did not have cancer on two separate occasions.

Talks with Ruth Morrissey of Schoolhouse Road in Monaleen in Limerick were unsuccessful earlier this week.

In 2009, Ms Morrissey was wrongly told there were no abnormalities in a smear sample that had been analysed in a US lab.

She got the same good news when another sample was analysed by a Dublin-based lab three years later.

However, the 37-year-old was then diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2014 and it came back this year.

The court heard earlier in the week that the HSE became aware of the incorrect reports in 2014, but she was only told two months ago.

Today, her psychiatrist Dr John Hillery said the delay in passing on that information made things worse.

He said the longer you’re kept in the dark about something like this, the more suspicious you become of it being done deliberately.

Hers is the second case of its kind to go to hearing but there are many more waiting in the wings.

In a statement, the State Claims Agency said it is committed to using mediation to avoid going to court but said an attempt earlier this week failed to resolve this particular case.

In response the Morrissey family said they feel “deep hurt” at what they view as a deliberate attempt by the State and its claims agency to misrepresent what happened in mediation talks earlier this week.