Dáil Éireann - Volume 586 - 27 May, 2004
Written Answers - Cancer Screening Programme.
Mr. Murphy Mr. Murphy
 157. Mr. Murphy asked the Minister for Health and Children why free breast screening is unavailable to women in the Southern Health Board area; and if he will introduce it in the near future, considering that it has been proven that early detection is vital. [16049/04]
Mr. Martin Mr. Martin
Mr. Martin: The national breast screening programme commenced in March 2000 with phase one covering the Eastern Regional Health Authority, Midland Health Board and the North Eastern Health Board region. Last year I announced the extension of the BreastCheck programme to counties Carlow, Kilkenny and Wexford and a national roll out to the southern and western counties. In March screening commenced in Wexford.
The national roll out of BreastCheck requires detailed planning to include essential infrastructure. Its clinical unit in the southern area will be at the South Infirmary-Victoria Hospital, Cork, with three associated mobile units. The area of coverage is counties Cork, Kerry, Waterford, Limerick and Tipperary South Riding.
The hospital considered it necessary to commission a site strategy study to ensure the integration of the breast screening services into its present and future development. My Department provided a capital grant of €230,000 for a study by professional architectural, engineering and quantity surveying experts. It has been completed and was submitted to my Department at the end of March. A detailed brief is being prepared by BreastCheck and the hospital. My Department will consider the project in the context of the framework for capital investment 2004-08.
Dáil Éireann 586 Written Answers Cancer Screening Programme.