London, United Kingdom. The health care system in a post Brexit Britain may be in for some choppy waters as standards of medical care in the island nation after leaving the European Union are anything but set in stone.
A woman had received breast implants to endow her with the confidence to take her son swimming. But after learning that the implants were defective, she had two options: keep them in and risk painful disfigurement, or pay for a costly and risky operation that would leave her as insecure as she had been before the surgery.
“I am now getting over my second op. No driving again, feeling isolated as family and friends work, guilty because I’m off work and there are so many things I can’t do,” said Ms. Jones, the recipient of a badly designed artificial hip confided to an online support group. She expects to recover fully from her removal surgery, but many others will not be as lucky.
If you ask a British member of the public how they feel about breast augmentation and hip replacement surgery, it is likely that their opinions on the two will be vary drastically. However, both come under the World Health Organisation’s definition of “medical device”. Also unlike most drugs, medical devices have historically been under regulated both legally and clinically.
Over the last five years, elected officials including British ones,have been trying to change this with a bill proposing stricter regulation of medical and diagnostic medical devices. Now, the European Commission has adopted the suggestions into law.
Britains are asking, just what will happen after a Brexit, to these EU rules and protections?
In the UK, an estimated 40,000 women – or ten per cent of all those using Poly Implant Prothèse received implants including the dangerous chemical. As well as women, the product was used by an unknown number of men looking for chest, testicle, penis and ass implants.
There have been scandals and personal pain for the UK and other European countries because of poor quality medical devices. Now recent gains could be reversed. Whether or not the UK post Brexit decides to embrace the EU’s new laws, it remains to be seen if health care is improved or harmed by the Brexit.