NI HPV Precautions Defended

Within hours of the tragic death of a schoolgirl in England who had just been vaccinated, NI's top doctor has insisted that parents need have no fears.

However, the Chief Medical Officer admitted that some stocks of the vaccine concerned - which fights the HPV virus, (pictured) - and being used by Trusts here, have been quarantined.

The 14-year old took ill in school after receiving the HPV vaccine and later died.

No link can be made between the death and the vaccine until all the facts are known and a post-mortem takes place.

Dr Michael McBride said: "I would urge parents and children not to panic.

"The removal of this particular batch of the vaccine is purely a precautionary measure while the tragic death in England is being fully investigated.

"Some stocks of the same batch of the Cervarix vaccine were issued to Trust pharmacies in Northern Ireland and we have requested Trusts to quarantine this batch," he explained.

"School nurses and GPs have been informed not to use this particular batch until the results of testing are known.

"It is important that we have the results of further investigations as soon as possible to establish the cause of this sad death.
News Image
"The HPV programme will continue by using stocks from different batches," he continued, but admitted that it is "a worrying time for parents and their children".

"I would urge everyone to listen to the advice of their GPs and school nurses."

Meanwhile, Liz Atkinson, Head of Care Services at the Ulster Cancer Foundation has also urged there be 'no panic'.

She said that, while "our deepest sympathies are with the family who are dealing with the tragic loss of their young daughter, we would urge people not to panic".

"The cause of death has not yet been confirmed," she continued.

"Anyone who is concerned about the vaccination should discuss their worries with their GP or school nurse.

"The reality is that 78 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer in Northern Ireland each year and this vaccination programme aims to safeguard women from cervical cancer.

"It could potentially save the lives of 30 local women every year," she said.

"By introducing the vaccination programme to girls before they become sexually active, the vaccine protects against the main strains of HPV, thereby significantly reducing the risk of developing cervical cancer later in life."

See: Teen Dies After HPV Cancer Vaccination


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

18 August 2016
Call For Students To Get Meningitis Vaccine
Students are being urged to get the meningitis vaccine by the Public Health Agency. Everyone born between 02 July 1997 and 01 July 1999, and first time university students up to the age of 25, are entitled to the Men ACWY vaccine.
22 May 2019
NI Cancer Patients May Rise By 60%
The number of new cancer patients in Northern Ireland could rocket by over 60% before 2035 if rigorous action is not taken now, Cancer Focus Northern Ireland has warned.
09 October 2018
University Experts Warn Brexit Will Stall Cancer Research
Experts have predicted that Brexit will cause a deadly blow to lifesaving cancer research throughout the UK due to a possible "medical manpower crisis". The warning comes from leading experts at Queen's University Belfast who anticipate a "catastrophic Brexit effect" on lifesaving research and cancer care.
30 March 2009
Cervical Cancer Immunisation Rates Takes A Jump
There has been a broad welcome today for a major acceleration in the numbers of women taking up the opportunity of a preventative cancer 'jab'. NI Health Minister, Michael McGimpsey welcomed the publication of uptake rates for immunisation against the Human papillomavirus (HPV) and announced details of a one-off catch-up programme.
03 September 2008
Anti-Cancer Jab Launched For NI Schoolgirls
Northern Ireland is now to follow an important health promotional lead from Scottish medics - where some of the first girls to take part in the anti-cancer HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) immunisation programme received their injections on Monday.