MMR jab unlikely to harm young babies
A young couple's baby was given the MMR jab by mistake "potentially putting her life at risk", The Daily Telegraph website reports misleadingly. Giving a baby the wrong vaccine is a serious mistake; fortunately, the error was quickly noticed and the baby appears not to have been seriously harmed. Unfortunately, the Telegraph has taken a sensationalist approach by quoting the most extreme possible reaction – anaphylaxis – without stating that this is extremely rare and treatable. The Telegraph's coverage says, “Newborns under six months must not be given the vaccine because they 'don't respond well' to it, according to NHS guidelines.” The paper also goes on to say, “The NHS website does not specify what can happen to babies under six months if they are given the MMR vaccine.” Unfortunately, the paper has taken words out of context, giving a misleading impression that there is some additional risk to young babies. There is no evidence of additional risk. What will happen to the baby given the MMR vaccine by mistake? It is unclear from the media coverage what has happened to the baby, although the Telegraph reports that she displayed side effects of sleepiness and appetite loss. A statement from NHS London said: "We are investigating the concerns raised by this family about their child’s vaccination and are currently establishing the facts. Whilst it is not routine or advisable to...
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