HC Deb 19 May 1936 vol 312 cc1015-6W

asked the Minister of Health (1) whether he is aware that comparative passive immunisation experiments with placental extract and convalescent measles serum on 69 children have been carried out by Dr. A. Joe at the North-Western Hospital, Hampstead; and whether such experimentation on children sent into the fever hospitals with scarlet fever, diphtheria, or whooping cough has received the approval of his Department;

(2) whether the parents of the 69 children experimented upon by Dr. Alexander Joe at the North-Western Hospital, Hampstead, with placental extract and convalescent measles serum had previously given their consent to these experiments?


I am informed that both kinds of serum have been used at this hospital during the recent epidemic, but I am advised that as both are known to be of definite value their use cannot be regarded as experimental, although comparative observations were made of the results. No approval by my Department was required. I understand that the consent of the parents was not obtained as the administration of serum to susceptible children who may be incubating measles is regarded by the hospital authorities as part of the necessary treatment.