The NHS vaccination bosses are being asked to introduce a new Meningitis B vaccine after a toddler was left severely disabled by the disease. According to Julie Tuckley, 37, the pain and anguish suffered by her 19-month son, Tommy Brown, should not be inflicted on another child.
When Tommy was only 5 months old, the potentially fatal disease struck him. After noticing that the boy was running a fever of 37.3°, Ms Tuckley and Dean Brown, 28, took him to the doctor. Although he was diagnosed as having a throat infection, the development of a purple rash, which spread across his body the following day, forced them to go back to the doctor, where he had to be revived after technically dying.
According to doctors the little boy, hailing from Walsall, West Midlands, had a survival chance of about 5%. However, the youngster has recovered after undergoing a serious, lifesaving, operation during which the doctors had to amputate both of his legs, and the fingers on both hands.
According to Ms Tuckley and Mr. Brown, the NHS should readily avail the “life-saving” vaccine which had already received approval from the European health chiefs in January.
Meningitis UK and Meningitis Trust have both teamed up with the couple in an effort compel the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to allow the use of the Bexsero vaccine.
The cost effectiveness and safety of the vaccine will be discussed by a JVCI next month. There are three expected scenarios; to allow the NHS to routinely use the jab, to allow the jab to be given only to high risk groups, or to allow parents who wish to pay for the vaccine to get access. Their petition can be found at www.beat-it-now.org, where the charities are asking for the vaccine to be included in the routine childhood immunisation programme.