Ireland's Health Services paused community testing on 16 March to adhere to social distancing guidelines and to temporarily redeploy staff to assist with COVID-19 patients.
"We will ensure all parts of the system have sufficient capacity to process the volume of tests. We are taking safety measures to protect both patients and staff, such as social distancing measures and face coverings," a spokesperson for BreastCheck told Independent.ie.
"This will mean that appointments will take longer and it may also take longer to get an appointment. We will continue to follow Public Health guidelines. The health and safety of our patients and staff is our priority," the source commented.
The numbers screened by BreastCheck from January to the end of June in 2019 was 85,731. From January to the end of June 2020, the number screened by BreastCheck was 38,153.
The spokesperson said that those patients who had appointments delayed during the shutdown will be invited back for screenings first. Then, patients who need routine screenings will be contacted on a phased basis.
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