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Ex-BMA chair calls for compulsory MMR jabs

The former chair of the BMA has called for the MMR vaccine to be made compulsory for children.

Sir Sandy Macara said children should not be able to go to school without having the vaccine, and has submitted a motion for debate at the annual BMA conference later this month.

Uptake of the vaccine has fallen considerably after research wrongly linked it to an increased risk of autism.

The Department of Health launched a catch-up campaign in August last year aimed at children who had not received both doses of MMR vaccine, after the number of cases of measles rose by an ‘unprecedented' 36%, to hit 1,348, in England and Wales, raising fears of an epidemic.

Sir Sandy told the BBC: ‘Our attempts to persuade people have failed.

‘The suggestion is that we ought to consider making a link which in effect would make it compulsory for children to be immunised if they are to receive the benefit of a free education from the state.'

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