There are other treatment methods available which may be better than using mesh to repair a hernia, but there is no drive to change the way hernias have been treated in this country for decades. Simply put - in the majority of cases, it works. But what about those people who are left in chronic pain?
I often wonder whether there is any way to introduce an element of competition into the NHS to drive progress, without losing the benefits of having a free health service.
NHS England is using mesh to repair hernias which leaves many patients in chronic pain, surgeons have told the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme. The concerns come after it emerged that more than 800 women are taking legal action against the NHS over the use of vaginal mesh implants. One woman said she was left "screaming on all fours from the agonising pain". NHS England said mesh implants had been successfully used to treat hernias for several decades. The material is its "recommended method" for treating the condition. It is used on tens of thousands of patients every year.