QUEBEC -- Quebec's Health Department was aware of errors in breast cancer testing for a month before an alarming study on the mistakes was released.

Health Minister Yves Bolduc says the report was given to his ministry in April but he only learned of its troubling conclusions this week through media reports.

The study found serious problems with Quebec's cancer screening practices and assessments that can potentially affect thousands of breast cancer patients.

It wasn't immediately clear why Bolduc was not informed about the report.

Bolduc was still not in a position on Friday to reassure Quebec breast cancer patients that they had in fact received appropriate treatment for their illness.

Instead he affirmed his commitment to create a provincewide quality control program for pathology labs -- a project that's been in the works for a year.

Government officials are still in the process of evaluating the study conducted by the association representing the province's pathologists.