Minister for Health Simon Harris has announced a pause in the use of transvaginal mesh devices.

It follows a review by the Department of Health, the Health Service Executive and the Health Products Regulatory Agency; of the decision by health authorities in England and Northern Ireland to pause the use of mesh until a set of conditions to mitigate the risks of injury are met.

In January, the Mesh Survivors Ireland group called for a suspension of the use of transvaginal mesh and an inquiry into its effects.

In a statement this evening Minister Harris TD said: "There is understandable public and patient anxiety about the ongoing safety of mesh devices following the considerable publicity that this issue has received and this has been heightened by recent developments in the NHS.

He said a pause on the use of mesh procedures is now considered proportionate and necessary to provide public assurance that these procedures are being carried out in accordance with internationally accepted good practice.

The minister said this pause would remain in place until the HSE confirms the implementation of recommendations relating to surgical training, informed consent and the development of an agreed dataset of mesh procedures.

The Department of Health has also written to the Institute of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and the Continence Foundation of Ireland requesting that they assist the HSE in progressing these recommendations urgently.

Patients affected by the cancellation will be contacted by the HSE to advise them that their surgery has been postponed.

Patients with concerns are advised to contact their consultant's clinic.