Doctors ordered to stop giving flu jabs to children

Health officials have ordered doctors to shelve a vaccination programme which was under way to protect children from swine flu.

Laura Donnelly

Doctors in north-west England began giving jabs to healthy schoolchildren earlier this month, after senior medics decided that stocks of vaccine should be used to prevent the spread of disease among the young.

The decision, taken by Bury Primary Care Trust (PCT), came 11 days ago, following more than a dozen deaths in Greater Manchester, including three in Bury, as well as that of three-year-old Lana Ameen, who died on Boxing Day soon after falling ill in nearby Stockport.

Parents were told that their children would be offered the jabs, and hundreds of pupils at two schools in Bury, Derby High School and Prestwich Arts College, were given the vaccine.

But on Tuesday, bosses at North West Strategic Health Authority (SHA) ordered doctors and nurses to stop providing the jabs – and now hundreds more families have been informed that their children will not be offered protection after all.

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