Bayer blocks non-US sales of Essure
Pharmaceutical company Bayer is halting the sales of its sterilisation implant Essure from all countries bar the US. It follows on from the temporary suspension of Essure implants sold within in the EU just a month ago.
The company has come under fire, with thousands of women having had to undergo hysterectomies, or further surgeries resulting from perforation of the uterus or fallopian tubes. In some cases, the non-hormonal coil implant has fallen out, and embedded itself on another part of the body.
The process incorporates the Insertion of the coil into a patients’ fallopian tubes, where it causes increased inflammation and scarring over the following months which closes off the tubes entirely. Known as a hysteroscopic sterilisation, the procedure is known to be un-invasive and done within local GP practices.
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However, made from nickel and polyester fibres (PET), the coil has been known to create acute and/or persistent pain, with many women suffering an allergic reaction from the nickel-titanium alloy or fibres as a result.
Sales in all countries except the US have now banned the use of Essure, yet Bayer has stated in French that "this decision is not linked to any problem of safety or quality of Essure.
“The safety and effectiveness of Essure is supported by more than 10 years of scientific research and real–life clinical settings."
The Food and Drug Administration has supported this claim, although it has received over 500 complaints in the US alone since the product’s approval in 2002.
Bayer is not seeking to reobtain its CE rating for the product, which would enable it to be distributed throughout the European Union. Doctors have now been advised to block any use of the implant going forward.
Check Point: Securing the future of enterprise IT
Cybersecurity solutions provider Check Point was founded in 1993 with a mission to secure ‘everything,’ and that includes the cloud. Conscious that nothing remains static in the digital world, the company prides itself on an ability to integrate new technology with its solutions. Across almost three decades in operation, Check Point, with its team of over 3,500 experts, has become adept at protecting networks, endpoints, mobile, IoT, and cloud.
“The pandemic has been somewhat of an accelerator in the evolution of cyber risk,” explains Erez Yarkoni, Global VP for Cloud Business. “We had remote workers and cloud adoption a long time beforehand, but now the volume and surface area is far greater.” Formerly a CIO for several big-name telcos before joining Check Point in 2019, Yarkoni considers the cloud to be “part of [his] heritage” and one of modern IT’s most valuable tools.
Check Point has three important ‘product families’, Quantum, CloudGuard, and Harmony, with each one providing another layer of holistic IT protection:
- Quantum: secures enterprise networks from sophisticated cyber attacks
- CloudGuard: acts as a scalable and unified cloud-native security platform for the protection of any cloud
- Harmony: protects remote users and devices from cyber threats that might compromise organisational data
However, more than just providing security, Yarkoni emphasises the need for software to be proactive and minimise the possibility of threats in the first instance. This is something Check Point assuredly delivers, “the industry recognises that preventing, not just detecting, is crucial. Check Point has one platform that gives customers the end-to-end cover they need; they don't have to go anywhere else. That level of threat prevention capability is core to our DNA and across all three product lines.”
In many ways, Check Point’s solutions’ capabilities have actually converged to meet the exact working requirements of contemporary enterprise IT. As more companies embark on their own digital transformation journeys in the wake of COVID-19, the inevitability of unforeseen threats increases, which also makes forming security-based partnerships essential. Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP) sought out Check Point for this very reason when it was in the process of selecting Microsoft Azure as its cloud provider. “Let's be clear: Azure is a secure cloud, but when you operate in a cloud you need several layers of security and governance to prevent mistakes from becoming risks,” Yarkoni clarifies.
The partnership is a distinctly three-way split, with each bringing its own core expertise and competencies. More than that, Check Point, HOOPP and Microsoft are all invested in deepening their understanding of each other at an engineering and developmental level. “Both of our organisations (Check Point and Microsoft) are customer-obsessed: we look at the problem from the eyes of the customer and ask, ‘Are we creating value?’” That kind of focus is proving to be invaluable in the digital era, when the challenges and threats of tomorrow remain unpredictable. In this climate, only the best protected will survive and Check Point is standing by, ready to help.
“HOOPP is an amazing organisation,” concludes Yarkoni. “For us to be successful with a customer and be selected as a partner is actually a badge of honor. It says, ‘We passed a very intense and in-depth inspection by very smart people,’ and for me that’s the best thing about working with organisations like HOOPP.”