Centre’s Measles anti-vaccination claims ‘not supported by objective scientific evidence’
Posted: 22nd August 2013
Posted in: Medical Negligence
The Cheshire-based Children’s Immunisation Centre – who had been selling separate mumps, measles and rubella vaccines – has received numerous complaints after claiming online that a link was present between the MMR jab and autism. The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) told the centre to remove the “misleading” claim from their website, arguing that it “could have caused fear and distress”.
Earlier in the year, the Swansea-area measles epidemic saw the death of one person out of 1,219 suspected measles cases. In an attempt to keep the epidemic under control, health officials provided almost 76,000 unscheduled MMR vaccinations to those who had not already been immunised.
Claimed to provide a “safe alternative” to MMR vaccine
However, the Children’s Immunisation Centre offered single jabs to parents, with clinics open in Swansea and across England. They responded to the ASA by claiming that they provided a safe alternative to parents wanting to protect their children, without undergoing NHS or government-funded programmes, such as the MMR vaccine. They also argued against ASA’s claims regarding their online content, saying that it was not utilised as an advertising mechanism.
The claim made by the Immunisation Centre’s website, was based on Dr Andrew Wakefield’s research, which was published in 1998. This research was later discredited as no link between the MMR jab and autism has been traced.
An ASA spokesperson said: “We told Children’s Immunisation Centre not to promote prescription-only medicines and to remove claims not supported by objective scientific evidence.”
The epidemic was declared as officially over in July.
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