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Child vaccine warning

21st February 2011

The Department of Health has warned GPs to be careful about giving children the correct type of flu vaccine.

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According to the UK's Medical Defence Union (MDU) said it was aware of a number of cases where children had been given flu jabs which were not suitable for their ages.

A number of jabs in the flu vaccine programme do not have a license to be given to children under the age of four.

The Department of Health stated that the "already excellent programme" could be made even more efficient by decreasing mistakes.

A spokeswoman for the department said: "It is the responsibility of the doctor or nurse giving the vaccine to check and ensure it is the right vaccine for the patient."

In 2010, the DH released a warning to doctors about the use of some types of flu vaccine after some children had febrile convulsions after they were given the injection.

They said it was important that children were given the right type of jab and said the vaccines Enzira and CSL Biotherapies generic influenza jab should not be given to children younger than five years of age.

In a statement, the MDU said: "The MDU has received a number of calls from members on its advice line recently where there has been a mix-up over the type of vaccine administered to children."

"In addition, a survey of cases reported to the MDU has revealed that 108 immunisation errors were reported over the last five years. Of these, 98 (90%) involved children and three concerned doctors administering the incorrect seasonal influenza vaccine to children."

 

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