Hearing from people harmed by surgical mesh

Released 04/12/2018

The government wants to hear from people who have experienced harm caused by surgical mesh. This is to improve patient safety in the future.

Share your surgical mesh story with the Ministry of Health

The Ministry of Health wants you to register your interest in sharing your story with them. If you, or someone you know, has been directly harmed by mesh they’d like to know how you would prefer to share your experience.

Register your interest

The Ministry of Health is intending to hold a public engagement on surgical mesh early next year. The format and timetable of that engagement will depend on the feedback received through the survey.

Surgical mesh background

Surgical mesh has caused considerable pain and harm to many New Zealanders, with ACC making over 1000 claim decisions relating to mesh over the last 13 years.

In New Zealand, surgical mesh is used to repair weakened or damaged tissue, such as hernias, pelvic organ prolapse, and for stress urinary incontinence.

The government is focused on preventing future problems with surgical mesh. New safeguards and limits on the use of mesh in urogynaecological surgery have been introduced. The Director-General of Health has written to all DHBs, and the private hospital association, asking them to undertake credentialing of their surgeons and to ensure the right consent processes are in place.

Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter says people who have been harmed by surgical mesh have an important part to play in the shaping the government’s next steps. They want to understand New Zealanders' experience of living with mesh and to collect their views on what else they think needs to be fixed to ensure such a situation does not happen again.

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