Workers’ Party Dublin Euro candidate Cllr. Éilis Ryan has renewed her calls for the state to roll-out a mandatory MMR vaccination scheme for school-going children. The call comes as the HSE revealed today (Wednesday) that mumps cases this year have reached six times as many as the same period last year.

Cllr. Ryan said:

“There has been a clear spike in mumps amongst teenagers born in the period when bogus research linking MMR to autism was published. It is essential that the state launch an immediate programme to ensure all school-going children have received the MMR vaccination.

“This is a longstanding, well-proven vaccination which has protected generations from potentially deadly diseases. It is not right that a disproven study from decades ago continues to put our population at risk.”

She continued:

“An unvaccinated 15 year old who contracts mumps may recover in a few weeks, but can pass the disease to babies too young to be vaccinated, in whom an illness like mumps is extremely severe.

“Effectively, we are prioritising the rights of a tiny minority to opt out of vaccination over the rights of the majority to live in safety. Like smoking in bars and whether or not to wear a seat-belt, this is an instance where the public good clashes with individual liberty.”

The European Parliament candidate concluded:

“In addition to a scheme of compulsory vaccination for school-goers, I am asking the government to investigate the possibility of manufacturing the vaccination within the public health service.

“Much of the skepticism about vaccinations comes from distrust of large, for profit pharmaceutical companies. One way to combat that is to take them out of the equation when it comes to off-patent medications such as the MMR vaccination.”