Monday, 23 February 2004

Blame all but themselves

Clive Summerfield @ Monday, February 23, 2004
For the last 6 years, we've had scare story after nightmare headline regarding the safety of the MMR vaccine, and possible links to autism. The consequence of this is that vaccination uptake is at a record low of 82%. And in some areas it is as low as 60%, a level at which herd-immunity is radically reduced.

Now we have the backlash, with The Lancet regretting its publication of Dr Wakefield's study, and various people and bodies falling over themselves to apportion blame.

But who ran all those scare stories over the last 6 years? That's right, the tabloid press. The same press now baying for blood. Maybe if they'd been a bit more in favour of reasoned debate from the beginning, we wouldn't be in the state we are, but what are a few children suffering from brain damage, deafness and other measles-related complications when compared to a few thousand more on your daily circulation figures.

And the government hasn't done itself many favours either.

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