Sling the Mesh: Regulation of medical devices is so lax fruit netting was almost approved

Netting used to package oranges was almost passed for use as a medical device.

Netting used to package oranges was almost passed for use as a medical device. - Credit: Archant

Earlier this year an Oxford scientist joined an undercover investigation to expose how the regulation of medical devices is so lax that mesh packaging for mandarins was on the brink of approval as a device.

Carl Heneghan, professor of evidence-based medicine at Oxford, produced the report for Jet Schouten, for Dutch consumer TV show Radar, about the advantages of using the netting.

The dossier formed part of a secretly recorded presentation to TUV Austria, one of many ‘notifying bodies’ in Europe that administer safety regulations.

Footage shows officials examining Heneghan’s report, compiled for representatives of a medical equipment firm, before declaring they could foresee “no problem” with the mesh being granted a CE mark for use in surgical procedures.


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