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FOI release

FOI – 000140 Breast Screening appointments and Self-referral system (HTML)

Published on 08 July 2022

Date received – 14 June 2022 | Date responded – 08 July 2022

Request

On Public Health Scotland’s website it states “Self-referral for women over 70 has been paused due to the impact of COVID-19. This is only temporary so we can prioritise those who have had their appointments delayed”.

Please provide the following information:

(1) How many of the breast screening appointments that were delayed by covid have since then been completed to date. The date being the day this FOI is submitted, 20th May 2022.

(2) The documentation that backs up the estimation that self-referral system for women over 70 will return in September.

Response

I refer to your freedom of information request that we received on 14 June 2022.

I can advise you that we have now completed the search of our records and can provide you with the following information:

** (1) How many of the breast screening appointments that were delayed by covid have since then been completed to date. The date being the day this FOI is submitted, 20th May 2022.**

The Scottish Breast Screening Programme (SBSP) offers eligible women 50-70 breast screening once every 3 years. The SBSP was paused due to covid-19 from March to July 2020 and the pause has delayed the screening invitation date for all eligible women (not only those who were due to be invited during the pause period). In addition, on restart of the programme, there was reduced capacity due to increased infection, prevention and control measures in place and the service has worked to increase capacity through extended days, weekend working and use of additional mobile units. Given the covid pause has delayed all invitations, the total number of appointments allocated from August 2020 to May 2022 are as follows:

4 August 2020 to 31 May 2022: 475,440 women have been allocated an appointment for breast screening across Scotland.

(2) The documentation that backs up the estimation that self-referral system for women over 70 will return in September.

SBSP Programme Board meeting minutes of 16 March 2022 are attached as Appendix 1.

I trust you will find the information of assistance and if you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact us.

If you are unhappy with any aspect of how we have dealt with your request you can make representations to us asking us to review the handling of your request.

If you require any further information please contact Associate Director Information Security & Governance, within 40 working days of the date of this correspondence.

Contact

Address

NHS National Services Scotland
Headquarters
Gyle Square
1 South Gyle Crescent
Edinburgh
EH12 9EB

If after a review you are still unhappy, you also have the right to apply to the Scottish Information Commissioner, who can be contacted at Kinburn Castle, St Andrews, Fife, KY16 9DS, or via their application form.

National Services Scotland (NSS) is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. You can view all FOI responses within our FOI Publications repository.