Doctor proposes allowance cut for ‘anti-vaxxers’

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COMMENTS: Sligo-born GP Dr Ruairi Hanley.

A doctor who is a native of Sligo has hit out strongly at those who oppose vaccinations and has proposed a controversial way to ensure parents vaccinate their children.

Dr Ruairi Hanley, who grew up in Sligo, has expressed his “dismay” at what he describes as “the ongoing campaign being waged against the Gardasil HPV [cervical cancer] vaccine”.

A support group called REGRET has been set up by parents of teenage girls who claim their daughters developed serious health problems after getting the vaccine.

Dr Hanley, who now practices as a GP in Drogheda, is concerned that just half of adolescent girls had started the recommended HPV vaccine series last September.

In his column in the Irish Medical Times, he wrote: “This scientific breakthrough has the potential to save the lives of hundreds of young women in the decades to come. Regrettably, thanks to the efforts of a minority of campaigners, and the irrational world of the internet, thousands of parents are denying their daughters this cancer-preventing jab.”

The outspoken columinist, who is a member of the Medical Council, also hit out at “a separate, broader ‘anti-vaxxer’ movement”, which he said is gaining ground in the US.

The full story with Dr Hanley can be found in this week’s Sligo Weekender- in shops and online now.

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