Maman Poulet | Clucking away crookedly through media, politics and life

What does Cancer look like?

November 23rd, 2007 · 10 Comments · Irish Politics, Social Policy

Green Ink thinks this is what cancer looks like. Sorry GI I have to disagree. I saw what cancer looks like on RTE news this evening. Joan Kennedy, one of the nine women who was misdiagnosed in Port Laoise Hospital was interviewed by Ciaran Mullooly. (Interview link can be found on this page.)

Joan is 78 and two weeks ago she had her breast removed 6 months after receiving the all clear. She was angry and so were the members of her family. There is huge anger in the Midlands about the treatment of these women, the neglect during the misdiagnosis and the neglect during the treatment that they are now receiving and hearing her daughter wonder what they in Dublin’ are doing, I have to wonder myself. What are the HSE doing? Complete incompetence by a major organisation – where is the crisis management? All those consultants surrounding Brendan Drumm? Their communications strategy is chaos, many of the women who had their mammogram’s reviewed went through enough already and now they have to wait to see if they are one of the women to have a surgical review of ultrasounds etc. I can’t blame Mary Harney – yet. But I don’t know if I was one of the women involved would I feel so charitable. And the only way things are going to get done on this is if politics is played with it…because at the moment silence is leading to that shower of useless feckers playing with women’s lives and emotions. Harney needs to get in there – stop saying it’s the HSE managing it and get tough – she has the support of the public in dealing with the consultants – many non PD voters think she is on the right track there. Now she needs to shout stop before she is.



10 Comments so far

  • Sean R

    The HSE is an ansolute disaster, and the cancer debacle is the worst of a systemic level of negligence. In light of my own small experience of health services, I am so angry about how this issue is developing and nobody seems to care a toss.

    The stories I see in the media about the women with breast cancer is nothing short of a blight on the so-called Celtic Tiger success. For a few years, from bank officials I know, I’ve heard tales about how it is discovered how bank accounts of young(ish) female clients are found suddenly closed as the women died of breast cancer, so the HSE is the rather bitter icing on a negligence cake.

    I don’t think Harney has a chance of solving this matter, and she should go. The other day I heard that in response to some submission or other to Cowen (in light of the budget) that some group (forget whom) wanted a reduction in the VAT on condoms in order to help make people be more responsible, etc. by dropping VAT on them. Harney (on the radio) was in full flight explaining how “complicated” it was for Brian to drop the VAT rate, and it might need consultation with Brussels. My jaw dropped as the excuses offered for ‘no-change’. I only wished she could get as passionate about breast cancer. I would like to see a woman as Health Minister tho’ in light of the circumstances but one preferably wielding a big stick to put some manners on the Health Dept, hospitals and HSE.

  • Green Ink

    If Harney and Drumm’s heads roll it does not exonerate the heedless lacklustre fucks responsible for possibly costing these women their lives. Harney and Drumm are the leaders under whom this cancer of blame-avoidance and incompetence has continued to flourish and must go. But every culpable head, from the top right down to whatever inadequate fuck thought that waiting to tell an Oireachtas Committee about these 97 women would avoid allegations of a “cover-up”, needs to roll.

  • Dan Sullivan

    I’m not 100% looking for Harney’s head at this point but I do think we should be seeing multiple resignations or firings in the HSE and Drumm has to consider his position. If we see no heads rolling then Harney should just walk away.

    We seem to have forgotten about it now but no one anywhere had to resign over the statutory rape problems.

  • Marie

    This fucking governement is KILLING women. Thats the bare, off message truth!


    Every one has got it wrong,some or most patients the misdiagnosis was not about mammograms, the real story is the botched up clinical follow up. Blame shifting is the cause for the new scare. Typical Wag the dog movie situation


    1. Why was Mr. Naughton given permission to look at the clinical notes while the review was being conducted—conflict of interest, clinical notes could have been manipulated during the process!! Think about it everything is a scam , a deep conspiracy
    2. Why were external surgeons sent to Portlaoise to conduct surgical reviews after three months?
    3. Why was the recent breast clinic not conducted by Mr.Naughton?
    4. Misdiagnosis is a load of misinformation, another cover up, the main reason- the patient’s were not followed up by the surgeons! Check it out
    5. Did you know some of the “breast clinics? were run by junior doctors, with very little experience?
    6. Why are Bertie and Mary backing the surgeons? Do they think is he “clean?? Wrong move, wrong horse to back
    7. 9 missed cases in a massive numbers of 3000 mammograms, a pretty good stat, a stat not achieved by any centers of radiology excellence anywhere in the world,{Google is a wonderful eye opening site} and certainly not in the Glorified St. Vincent’s – that is the very reason, someone panicked because they were losing the battle – and brought in a new scare of ultrasounds to divert the attention. Clever, sorry -cunning very cunning. Diverting tactics that will do the military proud

  • Bock the Robber

    It’s very simple. The health service is not run by health professionals. It’s run by clerks.

  • AL

    It’s not getting any better. I’ve been waiting almost 3 months to get an ultrasound at Port Laoise as a private patient, due to bleeding and lumps. They may be finally getting to these women, but meanwhile there are more of us waiting and not knowing. It’s terrifying and no one seems to care. Prognosis for cancer is directly proportionate to the time in which it is detected and treatment begins – the earlier the better – yet I could be dead by the time the HSE get around to even giving me a scan.