A WORRIED mum is calling for answers after she was told she could develop cancer but would have to wait indefinitely for further tests.

Joanne Cole, 37, received a letter from Basildon Hospital three weeks ago telling her it had found abnormal cells after she went for a routine smear test.

It said they would be in touch to organise further tests by May 1, with her appointment no later than May 22.

However, Mrs Cole, of Billericay, was stunned when she received a phone call from the hospital telling her that due to staff shortages it did not know when her appointment would be. Mrs Cole said: “They just said there weren’t any appointments. It’s disgusting.

“I spoke to one who said the chances are I’m fine, but if not then it’s treatable anyway. But I don’t want it to have to get to that stage where it needs treating at all.”

Mrs Cole, a mum of two, said she had not been offered another hospital to attend and has not been given a time when an appointment could become available. Her worried husband Paul Connelly has insisted she go privately so she is tested as soon as possible. But it means they are paying £500.

He said: “It’s so frustrating because that letter is scary.

“The word ‘cancer’ does appear in the letter and it frightens the life out of you. And then you find you can’t get an appointment. I am 52 and have always paid into my national insurance and so has Jo. It’s ridiculous we are having this problem, £500 is a lot of money”

A spokesman for Basildon Hospital said: “We would urge Mrs Cole to contact our PALS department so we can investigate her concerns properly.

“Wewere unable to look into it further or provide further information because of the bank holiday