Medical Mistake Claims - Simpson Millar LLP
 
 

MMR Is Not a Risk to Young Children – The Wrong Medication Might Be

Author: Neil Fearn  Bullet  Dated: 03/07/2014

A story has surfaced recently in the Telegraph, regarding a 2 month old baby who was given the MMR jab. Usually, children are given the MMR jab at the age of 12 months, unless there is a particular outbreak putting them at risk.

What Are the Risks?

No one would dispute that giving a baby the wrong vaccine is an act of carelessness by nursing staff, but in this case, it is highly unlikely that harm would have come to the child.

At the age of 2 months, your baby should receive their first set of vaccinations. These include a 5 in 1 jab and the first dose of the pneumococcal and rotavirus vaccines. According to the NHS Choices website, "there is no evidence of additional risk" to children younger than 12 months who receive the MMR jab and they state the article in the Telegraph is misleading and sensationalist.

The MMR jab is not routinely given to babies in the first 6 months as they are already protected from the remaining antibodies provided at birth by their mothers. To administer the vaccine at this point would not be very effective. These antibodies then decline over time requiring a top up from the MMR jab around the age of 1.

There are a few side effects associated with the MMR jab but these are usually mild and can be expected. In very few cases, your child may develop a rash of "bruise- like spots" weeks after the jab – if you have concerns, you should return to your GP.

Serious Consequences over the Wrong Medication

According to the NHS, the benefits of vaccinating your child far outweigh the harms, and stories such as this could potentially lead to parents leaving their children at risk of infection.

Despite this, giving a child the wrong medication can in some instances have serious consequences. Children have died and many more have been injured due to mislabelled medication or being given the wrong medicine when in the care of hospital staff. Another problem that arises is when children are given a number of medications, but the doctor has not taken into account how those medicines will interact with each other.

Children might not always have an adverse effect to the wrong medication, but in some cases they do. It is only in these cases where you may think about claiming against the negligence of the medical staff. If you do wish to proceed with a claim, for both peace of mind and compensation you are able to do so on behalf of your child. Any money reward can be secured in a trust which may go some way to help in the future, and get the best from an avoidable situation.

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