Women seek provincial support for surgery in California
Three Saskatchewan women are at the legislature today, asking the health minister to pay for surgery in California.
The women say they are suffering serious complications after having transvaginal meshes implanted in them.
The meshes are used to treat such conditions as pelvic prolapses or bladder prolapses, but the women say there are problems when they break down.
The women say no Canadian doctor is willing to remove all of the mesh and that's why they have to go to the U.S. for surgery.
"We are angry, we are sick and we are in pain, " said Marika English, who's from Prince Albert. "And we have a message for women. You have to educate yourself. Don't end up like us, don't."
English has surgery booked in California next week to remove the mesh.
Unless the government agrees to pay for it, it will cost her $30,000.
Saskatchewan's Minister of Health, Dustin Duncan, said treatment is available in Canada.
Duncan said a surgeon in B.C. devotes a third of his practice to removing mesh.
"In cases where out-of-country treatment is sought first we look out-of-province and if that is available, then that is the first option that is taken," Duncan said.
According to government officials, in addition to the B.C. surgeon there are at least eight other Canadian physicians who can do a mesh-removal procedure.