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Mammograms in Queensland Reviewed

Over 9,000 mammogram test results of women in north Queensland have been reviewed following allegations of inaccuracy by the state government.//

According to the Queensland Health Minister Stephen Robertson there was an unusually low pickup of cancer rates in the Cairns area in recent months.

9,300 cases were reviewed. Among these 83 women had to be brought in for further testing and two showed non-malignant cancers.

Two Gold Coast women are suing BreastScreen Queensland because they allege they developed breast cancer after being cleared by the Government mammogram service. These women, one, Sandra Harley, a 48-year-old woman from Runaway Bay had to undergo a partial mastectomy with further deterioration of her condition and the other, Phillipa Naismith, a 52-year-old Mudgeeraba woman now has terminal cancer.

A spokesman for Mr Robertson said that the radiologist who failed to pick up the two cancers is "no longer working for BreastScreen Queensland." He said, "No service is perfect and BreastScreen Queensland still perform an excellent job."

According to opposition health spokesman Bruce Flegg Queensland women had a right to be worried about the level of service they were receiving.

He said, "This is a product recall; a significant matter of public attention.You have to have a very high level of concern over the standard of X-rays before you reread (9,300) X-rays. There is no escaping the fact this is a cover-up."

Premier Peter Beattie has mentioned that improvements would be made to BreastScreen Queensland if it was found wanting.


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