In this letter to Maria Caulfield MP, the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) First Do No Harm raises concerns that several recommendations from The Independent Medicines and Medical Devices Safety (IMMDS) Review have not so far been taken up by the government.
The IMMDS Review looked at how the health system responds to reports from patients about harmful side effects from medicines and medical devices. It specifically looked at the cases of Primodos (a hormone pregnancy test), sodium valproate (an epilepsy medication) and pelvic mesh, and found that significant harm had been caused as a result of problems in the regulatory system and the reporting of side effects. It made a number of key recommendations to the government.
The APPG highlights the urgent need to establish a redress scheme for those who have suffered avoidable harm related to the products in the IMMDS Review, a recommendation for which there is widespread cross-party support. They also express disappointment that the government continues to promote the litigation route for those who have suffered harm, arguing that it is an adversarial and difficult process for patients and families who have already suffered significant harm.
The letter does recognise that the government has decided to appoint a Patient Safety Commissioner, as recommended by the IMMDS Review, and highlights the significance of this step.
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