Manama: A Bahraini lawmaker has urged the health ministry and surgical centres to provide information whether Bahrain women had breast implants made by French company Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) amid increasing global concerns that the products could rupture and leak cheap silicone into the body.
"The ministry and the centres should issue statements on the issue in Bahrain," Jamal Saleh, an orthopedic surgeon by formation, said. "They should also clarify their legal responsibilities towards removing and replacing the implants. Women who had the implants after they suffered from cancer or for cosmetic purposes should not be made to pay," said the lawmaker, who was elected to the lower chamber of the bicameral parliament in September.
In neighbouring Qatar, health officials said last month that hospitals did not receive any alert about PIP-made breast implants. "Qatari hospitals do not deal with the controversial French company," they told local daily Al Arab.
The statements aimed at addressing possible concerns about something usually kept private, but that came out in the open after safety concerns have reached alarmingly high levels.
In France where the scandal broke out, more than 1,000 ruptures pushed Health Minister Xavier Bertrand to offer to pay for 30,000 women around the country to have their breast implants removed.
In Israel, around 1,000 Israeli women called a special health ministry hotline to seek advice about their breast implants. The ministry believes that 850 women in the country have PIP implants.
The figure, according to local daily Haaretz, represents five per cent of the total number of women who have undergone implant procedures in Israel. Last month, Jamal Saleh called for making first aid training compulsory in all public and private sector establishments and agencies.
"Some of the personnel must be trained on providing first aid in cases of emergency," he said. "At least one employee in every establishment, agency or company should be well trained on first aid. He or she should have the proper certificate and should understand the culture of first aid," he said.
The move is part of promoting the provision of first aid to ensure higher safety standards throughout the country, and mainly during working hours, the MP said.