The HSE said it was based on price and a number of other criteria but didn't outline the other criteria

The cervical smear test contract was awarded to two US laboratories on behalf of the state based on the cheapest price.

One of those was a sister company of the laboratory that settled a lawsuit with Vicky Phelan on the 25th of April.

According to documents seen by the Irish Independent, the contract to carry out screening on behalf of the National Cancer Screening Service was based on the lowest price without detailing any other criteria.

The two laboratories who were awarded the contracts in 2012 were Quest Diagnostics as well as MedLab Pathology.

MedLab is a sister company of CPL Limited, who settled a lawsuit with Limerick mother Vicky Phelan last month, which exposed the Cervical Check scandal.

In response to the paper, the HSE said that with all tenders, cost is one of a number of criteria on on how a submission is scored.

However, they did not set out what other criteria was used.