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Jackie Fletcher

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Comments (2)

  • Comment on: European Commission authorises meningitis B vaccine

    Jackie Fletcher's comment 24 January, 2013 12:44 pm

    Further to my posting yesterday:

    Here is an extract from yesterday's coverage of the same subject in 'Pulse' magazine:

    '...The Men B vaccine had ‘no clinically relevant interference’ with other routine vaccines given concomitantly, but it did increase the reactogenicity, with 77% of children showing febrile reactions after having the meningococcal B vaccine with other vaccines, and two cases of febrile seizures and two cases of Kawasaki disease in children who received the vaccine....'

    If anyone wishes to read the Lancet abstract it can be found here:

    The study was funded by Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics.

  • Comment on: European Commission authorises meningitis B vaccine

    Jackie Fletcher's comment 23 January, 2013 4:45 pm

    Babies currently receive 25 vaccines before they are two years old making it a very congested vaccination programme.

    Your report raises some important questions:

    How do the UK vaccine-policy makers know this vaccine is safe and effective when given in combination with other vaccines?
    If a baby has a severe adverse reaction how will the health professional determine which vaccine component has caused it?
    Will the reporting of suspected adverse reactions be made compulsory? (Currently, in practice, it is at the health professional's discretion.)
    Will all reported adverse reactions be investigated thoroughly and followed up to determine if the child has fully recovered or deteriorated? (Currently, I understand, this is not done.)
    Will all parents be informed that there is a Government Vaccine Damage Payment Unit (VDPU) designed to assess cases were the child is 60% vaccine damaged or more? (Currently this is not done.)
    Will parents be informed that if their baby dies following routine vaccines the VDPU cannot investigate the case? (There is a clause in the Act which specifies that a parent can only apply for assessment once the infant has passed his/her 2nd birthday.)

    The UK Government accepts and condones the under-reporting of adverse vaccine reactions which is estimated to be in excess of 90%. If data on suspected reactions is not collected accurately and the few reports that are put forward are not investigated thoroughly by the MHRA how does the Government reach conclusions on the safety of vaccines?

    While I, and I expect every parent, welcomes the opportunity to reduce the risk of meningitis in some children, this vaccine will be rolled out across all children and we surely have to do everything possible to ensure no child is accidentally harmed in the process. A child damaged by meningitis or a child damaged by a vaccine, both matter, both count.