NHS Breast Screening Claims

NHS Breast Screening Claims

Speaking in the House of Commons on 2 May 2018, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt announced that a computer algorithm failure dating back to 2009 has meant that an estimated 450,000 women aged between 68 and 71 were mistakenly not invited to their final breast screening, potentially leading to otherwise avoidable failures to identify breast cancer.

Announcing an independent review into the issue, the Health Secretary has stated that, although at this stage it is not clear whether any delay in diagnosis resulted in any avoidable harm or death, research undertaken by Public Health England indicates that there may have been 135 and 270 women who have had their lives shortened as a result.

How do I know if I am affected?

  • The Government has said that only women in England are affected by the issue as the NHS in Scotland, Wales and Northern Island uses a different IT system.
  • Of the estimated 450,000 women affected 309,000 women are thought to still be alive.
  • The NHS has announced that it will be writing to everyone who did not receive their final routine appointment. Their aim is to write to all women affected by 31 May 2018.

How do I know if a family member has been affected?

  • The Government has said that, in addition to contacting affected women who are alive, it will contact the families of women who had died of breast cancer and who they believed had missed a screening appointment as a result of this failure.

What do I do if I have been told that I missed a check-up?

  • The Government has said that all women who missed screening as a result of this failure will be given the opportunity for a further screening test.
  • The Government is aiming to ensure that women who have been affected can be screened again by 31 October 2018.

How do I know if I may have a claim?

  • Anyone who is notified that they have missed a screening test as a result of this failure and has subsequently gone on to develop breast cancer will have a claim if it can be shown that the missed scan would have identified the cancer sooner and led to a different outcome.
  • Families of women who missed a screening appointment and who have subsequently died as a result of breast cancer may also have a claim if it can be shown that the missed scan would have avoided the death.

What should I do if I think I have a claim?

  • Tozers have extensive experience of dealing with claims relating to missed breast cancer and have previously acted for a number of patients affected by problems at a screening unit in East Devon.
  • If you think that you are affected contact us now for a free confidential discussion.

What to do if you are concerned about breast cancer?

  •  Public health England have set up helpline (0800 1692692) for women to call for advice.

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Alternatively you can call us on 01392 207020.

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