Cumberland County Health Dept still trying to notify 93 women of abnormal test results

Cumberland health department meeting_481795

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) – The Cumberland County Health Department said it’s making progress in notifying women who had abnormal pap smears.

Those tests took place between 2011 and 2015. The initial number of women who were not notified of abnormal results was 160, they’ve been able to contact 66 of them.

It’s a story CBS North Carolina broke. Our report prompting the county to investigate.

Since then, the health director and the nursing director have both resigned.

“Ninety-three certified letters were sent out,” said Rod Jenkins, the Health Department’s interim director.

Jenkins told commissioners his department used an enhanced tracking system to find new addresses for the 93 women they haven’t been able to contact. Certified letters went out to those women this week.

“This process continues and we will endeavor to do our best to continue to try to reach every patient until its done,” Jenkins said.

In July, Jenkins said letters were sent out to all 160 women.

He revised the total number of patients to 150, saying one of them had been counted twice.

Jenkins said none of the 66 women who they’ve contacted have had any negative health effects associated with the delayed notification process.

He declined to answer any questions after a finance committee meeting Thursday morning. He referred us to the public information officer who didn’t have the requested information. She in turn called Jenkins for clarification.

“Its really disappointing that there’s so many women out there that really don’t know what’s going on with their body,” Candace Thompson, who claims she’s one of those 93 women.RELATED: Cumberland County Health Dept. patient: ‘This is a life and death situation’

Thompson said she had pap smears at the Cumberland County Health Department during that time frame.

She told CBS North Carolina she has to have her uterus removed because she wasn’t informed of her abnormal test results. Thompson said she’s in danger of developing cervical cancer if she doesn’t have the surgery.

Thompson had this message for Jenkins and County Commissioners. “What if this was your daughter, your niece?” she said.

She said she’s still having trouble getting her medical records from the Health Department.

The Health Department couldn’t comment on her case, citing HIPPA regulations.

Charles Evans, vice chairman of the Board of Commissioners, told CBS North Carolina more needed to be done.

He calling for the SBI to be brought in to investigate.

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