“The Trust has become aware of a programming issue with a machine used for taking biopsies of the breast at Ormskirk and District General Hospital.
“The procedure is used to remove a small sample of breast tissue for analysis where an abnormality is identified following a mammogram.
“A panel of consultants and breast specialist nurses has reviewed the records of 117 patients who underwent the procedure to establish if they require any further assessment.
“The panel concluded that there was no cause for concern in the majority of patients. However, we are inviting back 14 patients as a precaution for a further consultation.
“Our breast care specialists assure me any risk to these patients is low.
“Following the original biopsy, each patient had their case reviewed at least once by a panel of specialist doctors and nurses, and was subsequently followed up. This process, which is part of our routine breast care service, has ensured the number of patients requiring further investigation has been kept to a minimum.
“I know this news will be deeply concerning for the women concerned and I am very sorry for the unnecessary worry we have caused them.
“The Trust has established an internal review group to investigate and report to the Board on the circumstances surrounding what has happened. It will be chaired by the Executive Medical Director and supported by independent experts.
“We are also working closely with our commissioners, the NHS Trust Development Authority, NHS England, the Care Quality Commission and the Royal College of Radiologists to ensure any lessons we learn can be shared more widely.”
The 14 recalled patients are being contacted directly by the Trust. A helpline staffed by senior nurses is also available for patients to provide reassurance and answer any concerns they may have.
The helpline number is 01704 704962. It will be staffed Monday to Friday between 8am and 8pm. A message can be left outside these hours.
Issued by Tony Ellis, marketing and communications manager