Naughten presses Minister on infections in meat plans

Independent TD Denis Naughten says Minister Simon Harris has acknowledged that he shares concerns raised by the Roscommon/Galway TD regarding the contact tracing system, and that as a result, the Minister has ordered an urgent examination of these concerns regarding Covid infection in the meat and nursing home sectors.

In a statement, Deputy Naughten said: “I welcome the fact that Minister Harris has reversed his position on the disclosure of medical test results to employers and is now seeking an explanation from the Department of Health and the HSE,” stated Denis Naughten.

“In my recent response to Minister Harris I took issue with six points made in his letter earlier that day justifying the disclosure of personal medical information to employers, even before employees received the results.

“This has led to a welcome u-turn by the Minister and I hope this will now commence a process of reviewing every aspect of the current infection management and contact tracing system which in its current format is doomed to failure”.

Denis Naughten pointed out that the correspondence from the Minister now begs further questions:

* Why was the decision taken to provide results to employers instead of contacting employees directly as all subjects of mass testing were asked to provide a contact number?

* Who made the decision?

* Did this happen in all settings in which mass testing occurred?

* Were results provided to employers even where employees were contacted by the HSE?

* Have the data subjects all been informed now by the HSE that sensitive health data about them was provided to their employer and details of how this data was processed?