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· In an article on mumps (Clinical, 22 October) we stated the 'Health Protection Agency said GPs did not need to send any more serology tests and in the context of an epidemic a clinical diagnosis was accurate enough for notification'. This was not the information supplied by the author, Dr Eithne MacMahon, who has asked us to clarify (as per the CDR Weekly of February 3, 2005) that whereas only a small minority (<10 per="" cent)="" of="" notified="" cases="" are="" confirmed="" in="" the="" laboratory="" when="" there="" is="" little="" mumps="" in="" circulation,="" recent="" data="" shows="" high="" confirmation="" rates="" (="">75 per cent) in those born between 1981 and 1986. As a result the HPA has advised that salivary testing should not be requested routinely in 18- to 23-year-olds with straightforward mumps but instead reserved for complicated cases or where laboratory confirmation is clinically important. GPs should continue to send samples for patients outside the 18-23 group.

· 'GMC to rule on legal cover for GPs' (News, 12 November) stated that plans to reform the Medical Act will make it compulsory for GPs to hold insurance. The reform will make indemnity, rather than insurance, compulsory. The GMC will subsequently decide whether discretionary indemnity remains an allowable indemnity option. Discretionary indemnity for dentists has also not been banned. Dentists must have 'adequate and appropriate insurance'. The General Dental Council is to decide by January 2007 on whether discretionary indemnity is allowable under

this definition.

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