Midwives have been accused of resisting the vaccination of pregnant women against the swine flu H1N1 virus.
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University of Nottingham Professor Jonathan Van Tam said: “There was a reluctance to give drugs in pregnancy but the effect it [the vaccine] had on reducing pneumonia showed these might have been helpful.
“I am rather critical of the midwifery community. I think it was very much the wrong thing to do.”
Royal College of Midwives deputy general secretary Louise Silverton said the accusation was “unfair”.
“We were very clear that we were advising women with risk factors to get immunised straight away.
“This is really very unfair when you think how much effort all of us put in to encourage women, but they were very worried.”