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Complainant Name:
Ms Wendy Stephen

Clauses Noted: 1

Publication: Sunday Express

Complaint:

Ms Wendy Stephen of Stonehaven complained that an article headlined ‘Dangers of the MMR jab “covered up”’, published on 15 July 2007, was inaccurate and misleading.

Resolution:

The complaint was resolved when the newspaper published the following letter from the complainant:

‘As the parent of a 16-year-old daughter, who I believe was left partially deaf as a result of MMR vaccination, I resent Lucy Johnson's report which links longstanding, acknowledged, problems with the Urabe mumps component, in an early version of the vaccine, with charges of serious professional misconduct brought against Dr Andrew Wakefield by the General Medical Council.

For more than a decade, Dr Wakefield's speculations that the “measles” component in MMR caused Autism became the only game in town during a now-discontinued class action lawsuit, on which £15m of public money was spent. Far from championing causes such as my daughter's associated with the Urabe mumps component, this led to problems such as hers being buried from public view and denied access to justice.

In November 1992, the government admitted a serious problem relating to the mumps component and withdrew the triple vaccine. That withdrawal was too late for my daughter, and no doubt many other children, who experienced recognised, albeit rare, side-effects. To conflate this issue with Dr Wakefield's issues is to continue the injustice’.

Report: 75



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