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Welsh NHS to pay for PIP implant removal and replacement

Women who had breast implants privately offered replacement by NHS

Louise Prime

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Women in Wales who had Poly Implant Prosthèse breast implants fitted privately may now “as a last resort” have them replaced as well as removed by the NHS, Welsh health minister Lesley Griffiths has announced. Women who have privately fitted PIP implants will be allowed NHS replacement only if there is a clinical need, if they live in and are registered with a GP in Wales, and if they have done everything possible to pursue their private clinic.

Previously, Ms Griffiths had said that women in Wales who had had their PIP implants fitted privately could have them removed on the NHS in cases of clinical need, but not replaced.

However, the BBC last night reported Ms Griffiths’ concerns that undergoing two separate surgical procedures would unnecessarily increase women’s risk of complications. She said: “Removing the implants and not replacing them could result in unsightly scarring, loose skin, and potentially the accumulation of fluids, need for drainage, and risk of infection.”

Health secretary Andrew Lansley is due later today to make a further announcement on the situation for women in England.

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