Breast cancer screening scandal: 100s of women may have died

Breast cancer screening scandal: 100s of women may have died

All of the women had been enrolled in the AgeX NHS trial, which aims to find out whether older women benefit from having extra breast cancer screening.

Breast cancer charities say they have also been inundated by calls.

Jeremy Hunt said Wednesday in Parliament that the mistake appeared to be the result of a "computer algorithm failure" dating back to 2009.

His wife Trixie was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010, a year after she should have had a scan.

However, cancer experts have cautioned that there are pros and cons to screening - not all cancers are picked up by screening and sometimes those picked up do not need to be treated.

Jeremy Hunt revealed that since 2009, 450,000 women between the ages of 68 - 71 had failed to receive invites to crucial breast cancer screenings.

Up to 309,000 women aged between 70 and 79 - those who are still alive - will now be offered the opportunity for a catch-up breast screening test this year, but it has come too late for many women who may have died, are living with long-term complications or have suffered unduly through debilitating chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

"However, tragically, there are likely to be some people in this group who would have been alive today if the failure had not happened.' Mr Hunt said families may be eligible for compensation if 'the missed scan is a likely cause of death" - raising the prospect of multi-million-pound payouts.

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in Britain, with more than 55,000 women diagnosed every year and almost 1,000 dying of the disease every month, according to non-governmental organisation Breast Cancer Now. She was registered with a GP but had not had a mammogram for several years.

Sajid Javid named Britain's new Home Secretary as Amber Rudd resigns
Javid is the son of a Pakistani bus driver who had arrived in Britain in 1961 with one pound in his pocket. A Home Office spokesman said the commitments could all be carried through under existing immigration laws.

"They and their families' wellbeing is our top priority and we are very sorry for these faults in the system", said Dr Jenny Harries, PHE's deputy medical director. There are so many variables. For every tonne collected, Against Breast Cancer receives £700 to fund breast cancer research.

Of those who missed invitations, 309,000 are estimated to still be alive and all those living in the United Kingdom who are registered with a GP will be contacted before the end of May. Many are anxiously playing a waiting game until the letters arrive, not knowing if they've been affected.

Women and their families caught up in the breast screening failure have demanded answers as to how hundreds of patients may have had their lives cut short.

Those under the age of 72 will receive an appointment letter informing them of the time and date, while those over 72 will also be offered a screening and have access to a helpline to decide if it will be beneficial.

"I don't know about whether she could have been saved, but I think she would have lived longer", he told The Telegraph.

"We have a screening programme that is world-class".

"We wouldn't want any lives to be shortened".

"We have carried out urgent work to identify the problem and have fixed it".

Related Articles