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Alarming Figures Call for Surgical Mesh Review

Barbara Stewart MP
Spokesperson for Health
2 April 2014

Alarming Figures Call for Surgical Mesh Review

New Zealand First is calling for the Minister of Health to urgently review the use of surgical mesh after alarming reports of health issues following surgery.

“Figures from ACC highlight the need for action before the number of patients affected balloons out of control,” says Health spokesperson Barbara Stewart.

“In three years till June 2013 ACC received 421 claims, 258 from women and 163 from men. ACC declined 30 per cent of surgical mesh-related claims lodged in that period,” she says.

Surgical mesh is mainly used for hernia repair and vaginal repair, but is also used in many other surgical treatments.

“Too many people are suffering after surgery yet we have a system in New Zealand that is supposed to ensure only safe products are used in our hospitals.

“Clearly the procedures that allow medical products to be used in New Zealand need to be reassessed. We have figures now that suggest surgical mesh is not up to the standards we expect.

“While a petition is about to come before Parliament is timely, the Minister should be taking action now before any more health issues are reported,’’ says Mrs Stewart.

ENDS

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