Good health news

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From Dr R. D. Harding

Sir: The press has developed a habit of rubbishing the NHS and the medical profession. Perhaps good news does not make good copy, but I have received a notice from the Chief Medical Officer of the Department of Health that, I think, merits a report in your newspaper. In October last year a major measles epidemic was forecast, with an anticipated 150,000 cases and 50 deaths. A crash vaccination campaign was launched by the DoH. The target population was 7 million children aged 5 to 16 years. The uptake was 92 per cent throughout England, with a range of 79 to 98 per cent between districts.

Not only has the expected epidemic failed to materialise, but in the past three months there have been a mere seven cases reported, of which three came from abroad and three were in children under the age of routine vaccination. There have been no deaths. All this has been provided free and with minimum disruption to children and families, as the vaccine was administered in schools.

Yours faithfully,

R. D. Harding